The way he’s playing this year, and especially in the play-offs, is comparable to the best ever NBA “under 6 ft” players. He may not be as fast “end-to-end” as Iverson, or have as pure a shot as Calvin Murphy, but his “quick twitch” start, stop, and change of direction is unsurpassed. This year and in these play-offs, he’s been as good a finisher as Iverson. I never thought I’d say that about any 5’ 9" NBA player.
Before this NBA year started, I honestly knew nothing about him. Has he, at age 25, just reached a new level of play this year with the Celtics?
Thomas has been fun to watch all year. He has been sensational and at times a one man show throughout the year. He is the primary reason Celtics ended up as the East one seed. Plus the little guy is just mentally tough.
Funny, you bring up Allen Iverson. Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg claimed Thomas was hard to guard because he has been allowed to palm the ball consistently. Many NBA coaches agree with that. The last guy accused of palming the ball consistently was Allen Iverson.
Yeah, he’s an incredible offensive player. You’ve got to really feel happy for him and how he played last night given everything he’s going through.
The way he can pull up in a heartbeat coming off screens makes him so hard to guard, because then the threat of it opens up driving lanes and he’s such a crafty finisher. PJ is right about the palming thing. He’s pretty borderline. I did like his response when asked about Hoiberg’s comments, said something along the lines of ‘the refs haven’t called that once this year, so I don’t expect them to now.’
He’s actually 28 and his contract expires after next year, so there’s been some talk about whether, at 5-9, it would be prudent for the Celtics to give him a big, max extension considering he’d turn 30 midway through the first year of it. This season and these playoffs have made that a pretty easy yes. He’s basically folk hero status in Boston.
It’s crazy, he used to kill the Thunder when he was the Sacramento Kings’ sixth man. They (surprise, surprise) really messed up by not keeping him when they could’ve done so for relatively cheap. And the Suns traded him, Goran Dragic and what could be the Lakers’ top-5 pick this year and got Brandon Knight and a few potentially good future first-round Miami Heat picks back. Not great return on investment unless those picks really hit. Boston hit home runs getting Thomas and Jae Crowder.
I wouldn’t be so harsh on them. Every NBA team and franchises in other sports have similar stories to tell. You almost have to not get involved in trading to be immune from that. But then again, you can make mistakes in the draft.
Who do you want them to take in June? Seemed like Buddy played pretty well post-trade. I like WCS’ athleticism and ability to switch in the modern NBA and Skal even flashed some. Hopefully they don’t make needless overpays in free agency. Surely Rudy will decline his player option, right?
I watched one of the former players/turned analyst argue with some of the ESPN pundits about Thomas’ carries. He said by rule palming or carrying requires the player to have his hand between the ball and the floor (or palm up), he said watch Thomas his hand never does that. He is just really good at a hesitation dribble.
Hand on bottom of ball between ball & floor then rotate hand 180 deg up over the top of ball while dribbling? That would be a difficult feat all together.
My assumption was rotating the hand just over 90 deg from lower part of ball on either side.
That’s what I took it from what he said, he also used his hand (no ball) but that is what he demonstrated (180%). He actually said the 90 degrees is legal, but that is outside my knowledge range. With the rules in the NBA (refs seem blind when it comes to certain players with the ball in their hands), I have no clue. I know there are some very good coaches on here, and if they’d like to explain, I’m all for it. Can always learn. Just have to listen