Here’s the Sacramento Bee reporting on 5-9, 185-pound Kings guard Isaiah Thomas, who is having an impressive season:
Since being drafted at No. 60 in 2011 – a resounding last – Thomas has nudged Tyreke Evans off the ball, outperformed his more celebrated teammate Jimmer Fredette, outplayed veteran Aaron Brooks, beat out Greivis Vasquez, the pass-first point guard who was acquired during the offseason and traded again before the turkey and dressing had cooled.
Finally, or for now at least since there should be nothing final about a team with an 8-19 record, Thomas has his own team to run. And he has shown no signs of slowing down. In his eight games as lead guard, he is averaging 20.9 points, 7.1 assists and 3.2 rebounds, numbers that most diminutive NBA guards of the modern era (Muggsy Bogues, Earl Boykins, Nate Robinson, Keith Jennings, Spud Webb, among them) couldn’t reach with a step ladder.
“I’ve always been the shortest guy out there,” Thomas said the other night, “and always had to make adjustments. You have to use different moves, tactics, either to shoot over the defense or get past people.”
A sampling of the left-hander’s favorite offerings include high-arching floaters, 3-pointers in transition, stepback 19-footers, hesitation dribble-drives that freeze defenders and open the lane for dunks, bank shots, layups and an increasing array of off-balance circus shots he admits stealing from colleagues Steve Nash, Jason Terry and Chris Paul, all of whom beat him by a few inches.