Boston Celtics Rumors: Isaiah Thomas reunion needs to happen

Boston Celtics Isaiah Thomas (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)
Boston Celtics Isaiah Thomas (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /

After last year’s disappointment, the Boston Celtics need to do something to get some good energy back in their fanbase. And with free agency now officially underway, new President of Basketball Operations Brad Stevens might have the perfect trick up his sleeve: bringing back fan favorite Isaiah Thomas.

With rumors swirling that Stevens would love a repeat performance of one of the best Celtics trades in recent memory, the time is now to bring Thomas back to the city where he played by far the best basketball of his career.

No matter how many times Danny Ainge said the door was open, there was really no shot that Thomas could return while the man who knowingly traded him while injured was still in charge. But with the Boston Celtics front office shakeup, there may never be a better opportunity for an IT reunion.

Boston Celtics need to win some of their fans back

After some disappointing years with underachieving rosters, culminating in last year’s complete disaster, the Boston Celtics find themselves in a unique position. They’re a team with two legitimate stars and championship aspirations going into an incredibly important offseason, yet they feel completely disconnected from their fans due to their underwhelming play.

So what can Brad Stevens do to address these issues? I can’t think of a better way to get the city feeling good again than to bring back one of the most liked players of the last decade of Celtics basketball, who also just so happens to be exactly what this team needs.

Just think about it. The single most infuriating characteristic of these last few seasons is that you could put this team down for at least one game a week where they looked like they just didn’t want to be there. In Thomas’ two and a half years in Boston, I’m pretty sure you could count the amount of those games on one hand. Thomas’ teams were less talented on paper, but they gave it their all every single night.

Thomas played with heart, something that Stevens often failed to get out of his teams from the bench ever since Thomas was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Kyrie Irving blockbuster. That was never more evident than his 2017 playoff run after the death of his sister Chyna, including his unforgettable 53-point outing on what would have been her birthday.

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That game remains one of the most inspiring performances in recent NBA history, and it speaks to everything that Thomas would bring back to the Celtics. This team badly needs someone with that amount of heart, even from a bench role like he would fill.

What to expect from Isaiah Thomas if he returns to the Boston Celtics

At the same time, though, it’s important to realize that the Isaiah Thomas the Boston Celtics would be getting back is not the same Isaiah Thomas fans will remember.

Since being traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2017, Thomas has bounced around on five teams, finding himself out of the league at various points due to more injuries and ineffective play.

None of that matters to me. If the C’s bring back Thomas, they won’t be counting on him to be the certified bucket getter he was when he made a run at league MVP. They won’t be counting on him to take clutch time shots. They have Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown for that.

He’ll be just another guy at the end of the bench, but one that has actual NBA potential and the ability to contribute to winning. Or who knows, maybe Thomas will recapture some Celtics magic and be a real role player for this team.

But if that doesn’t happen, he’ll just be a bench guy that the fans love. That’s okay, because that’s exactly what this team needs right now. Imagine the roars from the crowd if new coach Ime Udoka sends Isaiah Thomas and Tacko Fall to the scorers table to check in. I think all of North Station would shake off of its foundation. It would be electric.

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It’s rare that a GM in basketball gets the chance to right a wrong, especially one that carries as much potential upside with as little risk as signing Thomas does. It’s time Brad. Bring Isaiah Thomas home.