Isaiah Thomas has been setting the record straight a lot recently. His latest subject: the hip injury that nearly prevented him from joining the Cleveland Cavaliers this summer.
The Players’ Tribune on Thursday dropped its latest installment of “Book of Isaiah II,” a behind-the-scenes video documentary chronicling Thomas’ eventful offseason. “Chapter 6: Limbo” focuses on the most controversial aspect of his trade from the Boston Celtics to Cleveland: After the two sides agreed to a deal on Aug. 22, the Cavs raised concerns about his injured hip following a post-trade physical.
The trade was delayed eight days before Boston agreed to send Cleveland an extra draft pick and complete the deal.
The fiasco led to much speculation about just how hurt Thomas was. In his latest video, Thomas gives his side of the story.
Thomas is adamant throughout the 13-minute video that his hip injury isn’t as serious as reports indicated.
“How they’re doing me right now, they’re trying to act like my hip is damaged,” Thomas said. “Like, I can play! I’m gonna be able to play. I’m gonna be 100 (percent). Every doctor has said that. It’s just gonna take some time.”
The former Celtic specifically expresses frustration with the media, which he feels created a false narrative about him that perhaps led to the trade delay.
“I think the trade was really getting held (up) — I think that was a lot to do with the media, man,” he says. “… It’s just crazy how they can take my hip and put it into something that’s not even there.
“That’s the part that hurt: Like, now you’re messing with my career.”
But the video also shows live footage of Thomas’ conversation with ESPN’s NBA insider, Adrian Wojnarowski, in which the point guard insists that his hip is fine. Wojnarowski published Thomas’ comments on Aug. 30, the same day the trade officially was finalized.
“I felt like it was time for me to finally say something and let the world know: I’m not damaged goods,” Thomas said of the interview. “Yes, I’m hurt, but I’m not damaged, and I will be back to the player I am or even better. It’s just going to take time.”
Thomas’ long road back officially ended Tuesday, when he scored 17 points in 19 minutes during a strong Cavs debut. And while he still has some work do to reach full strength, it’s clear his trademark fire still is there — the fire that led to this gem at the 9:30 mark of the video:
“And they say my hip is f***ed. I shoot better than motherf***ers on a bad hip. F*** outta here, man.”
Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images