In a world full of fake, contrived, “stick-to-the-script” statements, this is about as “real” as someone can get. Isaiah Thomas was super genuine in this letter and it’s a must read even if you are not a basketball fan. It shows the true side of IT4 and the side that fans sometimes forget: Athletes are first and foremost, humans. They have families to worry about. They have everyday problems just like you and me. The athletes just happen to make more money and are in the public spectrum a lot more than you and me. From talking about how one son is excited for his dad to play with LeBron James and how the other is disappointed because he has to leave Boston, you totally feel for Thomas.
I love how Isaiah said that “this is a business.” The NBA is a business no matter how you look at it. As a kid, you grow up loving the hometown heroes and cry when they leave. You almost feel betrayed. You saw all of Cleveland burn jerseys when Lebron left. All of Oklahoma City cried when KD left. His relationship was ruined with Russell Westbrook and frankly, I don’t know if it will ever be the same. That being said, it is a business. Isaiah is SPOT ON in the following two paragraphs.
“Plus, in a lot of ways, I actually think this was a good lesson. Not only for me, but for the league as a whole. And for the fans and the media, too, you know, just in terms of how they talk about guys changing teams. I was thinking about that last year with KD and his free agency — about how people gave him such a hard time for doing what he felt was best for him and his future. How they turned him into a villain, just for doing what was his right to do as a free agent in this league. Suddenly, it was, “Oh, he’s selfish,” or, “Oh, he’s a coward.” Suddenly, just for doing business on his end, and doing right by himself, he was portrayed as this bad guy.
But that’s what I think my trade can show people. I want them to see how my getting traded — just like that, without any warning — by the franchise that I scratched and clawed for, and bled for, and put my everything on the line for? That’s why people need to fix their perspective. It’s like, man — with a few exceptions, unless we’re free agents, 99 times out of 100, it’s the owners with the power. So when players are getting moved left and right, and having their lives changed without any say-so, and it’s no big deal … but then the handful of times it flips, and the player has control … then it’s some scandal? Just being honest, but — to me, that says a lot about where we are as a league, and even as a society. And it says a lot about how far we still have to go.” – IT
Perfectly said. This is why I will never understand the hatred for players when they leave because they feel it’s best for THEM, the player. When I see guys leave for free agency, I justify it by two situations: more money or a better team. 98% of the time, I’ll side with the player. LeBron, KD, etc. They left for better situations so I can’t blame them. The media constructs this idea that if you don’t win a championship, you are not an all-time great. That’s the view that has been constructed so if that’s the case, why wouldn’t you go try to win a ring?
However, this isn’t a KD or LeBron article. This is about Isaiah. The maturity and poise he had regarding all of what he has been through is that of a saint. If a city decided to dump me via trade because they didn’t believe in me, I would hold the biggest grudge this side of the Mississippi. The GM is basically saying “You will never make us win so we are trading you.” A slap in the face huh. But, to beat a dead horse, Isaiah knows that the NBA is a business. That being said, I loved the quote below.
I’mma just say this here, point-blank, to get it over with — and then you can go ahead and post it on whatever bulletin boards you want to: You are not going to want to mess with the Cavs this year. This is going to be a great year to be a Cavs fan, a great year. And I’m excited. – Isaiah Thomas
I will never be a Cavs fan because I’m loyal to my Knicks, but I will now root for Isaiah Thomas. He gained another fan today and I’m probably not the only one who thinks this.