It’s no secret that Isaiah Thomas (Boston Celtics) is quite arguably my favorite guard in the NBA. My respect and love for his game started in the mid 2000’s as I watched his legend grow first-hand in the Seattle-Tacoma area. From seeing him set a Washington State Tournament record with 51 Points against eventual champion Franklin High School, to his stat-stuffed year at the South Kent School, to his stellar career at the University of Washington, Isaiah Thomas has simply been a man on a mission. Standing 5’8, 5’9 on a good day, the odds were always stacked high against him. But as they say, where there is a will, there is a way. I.T. as he is so affectionately called, just simply could not be denied.
Having the work ethic of a psychopath, Thomas was mentored by Seattle greats such as Jason Terry, Jamal Crawford, Brandon Roy, and Nate Robinson to name a few. The stars were aligned in such a way for Thomas to spread his wings right into the NBA. The 60th overall pick (last pick in the draft, aka Mr. Irrelevant) has put together quite the career thus far. Albeit playing for 3 teams in a 5-year span, Thomas has produced everywhere he’s been. His career mirrors one of his and my favorite rappers in a way: Nipsey Hussle (side bar: check out our NBA-to-rapper comparisons).
Like Thomas, Nipsey shares that same rags to riches story. Supremely confident and fueled by his motto, “The Marathon Continues”, it’s easy to see why Thomas and Hussle relate to each other. Neither one was given a chance, yet they bet the house on themselves and defeated the odds. One can only admire and draw inspiration from their stories. Isaiah Thomas is enjoying another productive year in Beantown — averaging career-highs in points per game and assists, while leading the charge for a Celtics team in the thick of the playoff race in a surprisingly tight Eastern Conference. Nipsey Hussle on the other hand continues to reshape the rap game and the art of self-promotion through his Proud2Pay campain. His Crenshaw Mixtape sent shockwaves as he made $100,000 by selling 1,000 copies for $100 a pop.
As a fan of both of these talented young champions, I’m anxious and excited to see their overall progression. As Isaiah Thomas continues to put up huge numbers, an All-Star game appearance seems all but locked up for someone who was continuously told he wouldn’t make it. He’s finally found a home in Boston, terrorizing opposing guards night in and night out in one of the most intense guard eras in the NBA’s history. Salute that man!
Understanding Thomas’ beginnings, his resolve, and determination, it’s evident that no matter what he would get what he desired from life. His success — past, present, and future, will always be much deserved. Very few work as hard as he does. Very few love the game like he does. He’s used every negative and turned it into a positive. Some may be fooled by the baby face or his small stature, but make absolutely no mistake, Isaiah Thomas is as cold blooded as they come at the point guard position. If you didn’t know about him before, there’s no excuse not to check for him now. He’s just that good. Mr. RELEVANT.