Isaiah Thomas is turning over a new leaf.
In a profile written by Bleacher Report’s Leo Sepkowitz, the Wizards point guard detailed how the roller coaster ride of his career, from injury to trades, affected his love of the game. He said today he’s “in a good place” despite everything.
“I’m at a good place mentally,” Thomas said, “I got my joy back.”
That loss of “joy” ensued after Thomas’ final run with the Celtics during the 2016-17 season, where he was rocked both physically and emotionally. When his sister, Chyna, passed away in April, Thomas persevered and competed the next day against the Bulls, scoring 33 points in her honor. He battled through injury and led the Celtics to the Eastern Conference playoffs, only to suffer a torn labrum in his hip.
Then at the end of the season, the Celtics traded him to the Cavaliers for Kyrie Irving. Given what he had gone through, the news deeply hurt him.
The moment Isaiah Thomas found out he was no longer a Boston Celtic…
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) December 21, 2017
His injury left him depressed, and Thomas trusted very few people. Still, despite how things went down in Boston, he holds no grudge against the Celtics today.
“Boston will always have my heart, because I went through a real-life situation there, and that city rolled with me,” he said. “I don’t wish them bad luck. It’s just, you can’t duplicate what’s real. What we had was real. There was a time I was upset. I felt like it was handled the wrong way for a franchise player. But I don’t hold no grudges.”
— NBA (@NBA) March 19, 2019
He said he still has “love” for the team and keeps in contact with head coach Brad Stevens. Thomas’ wife, Kayla, admitted that fans even approach him on the street and praise him for his time in Boston. She wants him to show that not only was he an impactful player then, but he still can be one now.
“I’m ready for him to prove he was a great player way before the Celtics,” she said. “He was a great player for the Celtics, and he’ll be a great player after the Celtics.”
Thomas expressed those same sentiments for himself.
“I don’t think about Boston,” he said. “I don’t want to be just, Boston.”