Sometimes, being good enough just doesn’t cut it, especially in the case of restricted free agent point guard Isaiah Thomas. Despite numbers that put him in elite company in 2014, IT is still waiting for a deal to materialize. He thinks he knows why, too. Thomas’ averages of 20 points and 6 assists this past season were matched only by LeBron James, James Harden, Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook and Kyrie Irving. The 5-9 Thomas believes his height is the only thing holding him back from getting the opportunity and contract he’s earned through his play. SLAM caught up with the Tacoma, WA, native on the opening day of the Reebok Breakout Classic camp in Philadelphia. The former University of Washington standout took part in the Classic Rap Roundtable, along with Shaquille O’Neal, Dominique Wilkins, Shawn Kemp and others while rocking a fresh pair of Kamikaze II Lows. After telling campers about his path to the pros and the hard work they have ahead of them, he got up with SLAM to talk about his free agency, some high school memories and the Seattle basketball scene. SLAM: How’s your summer going as you play the waiting game with free agency? Isaiah Thomas: It’s going alright. I’m just working out, spending time with my two boys, and just being a family man. That’s all I can do right now. SLAM: Is your agent handling most of it, or are you involved? IT: I’m involved but my agent gets the calls each and every day. We’re just taking it a day at a time. We know that everyone is waiting on LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony to make their decisions and I think after that things will start to get rolling a lot faster. SLAM: Shaq said down there (on the panel) that you’re coming back to Sacramento. Is that your No. 1 choice, to be back there? IT: I just want to be wanted. I don’t know if they really want me like other teams do. Like I said, since day one I just want to be wanted. I know there’s a few teams out there that’s showing a lot of interest. I’m just waiting to see what’s the best fit for me. At the end of the day it’s a business and you’ve got to do what’s best for yourself. SLAM: The team signed Darren Collison last week. After the season you had, how did it feel to see them go out and get another point guard when you’re sitting there? IT: It hurt, but at the same time that’s been my story my whole life. People have doubted me, people always bring guys in who they think are going to outplay me or outwork me and that’s just not the case. I’m going to just continue working hard, continue to be me, and hopefully a real good team wants me on their team and I can go there. SLAM: Do you have any potential landing spots you could tell me, places you’re interested in going? IT: The teams that have contacted with a lot of interest are the Lakers, the Miami Heat, the Dallas Mavericks, the Suns and the Detroit Pistons. They’ve all got their pros and cons, at the end of the day you’ve got to do what’s best for yourself. I could see myself with any of those teams. SLAM: Is anyone the favorite so far, or are you just waiting to see how everything shakes out? IT: The Lakers, Dallas or Phoenix.
Isaiah Thomas prefers Lakers, Mavericks or Suns
SLAM Online | Jul 11