BOSTON - The Boston Celtics (30-10) welcome back former guard Isaiah Thomas and the Cleveland Cavaliers (25-12) tonight at TD Garden. This will be the first time that Thomas makes his return to the Garden floor, but he will not play.
“I love this city. They’ve given me an opportunity to be who I always wanted to be and I can’t thank them enough. There’s no hard feelings to anybody. I’m glad I’m back.”
Thomas played last night in the Cav’s 127-110 win vs the Portland Trailblazers, in which he scored 17 points in 19 minutes but Head Coach Tyrone Lue has a 20-22 minutes restriction for the 5’9 guard.
Thomas played two and a half seasons with Boston, and last year averaged a career best 28.9 points per game. Cleveland’s All-Star point guard is working his way back from a hip injury he sustained last March.
“It’s been a process so it’s not going to…overnight, it’s not going to happen,” Lue said. “He’s been doing a great job of encouraging guys on the bench and cheering for our guys, keeping our guys upbeat and now he has a chance to play.”
The Celtics are coming off their 108-105 win vs the Brooklyn Nets on New Yeas Eve but the Celtics know that Cleveland will be a much tougher test.
“Really, really tough task, obviously. They’ve had everybody’s number in the East for a couple of years now, and we’re amongst that list,” said Head Coach Brad Stevens. “So, we’ll see – we’ll see how whatever Wednesday goes.”
Jaylen Brown joked after Sunday night’s win about facing Cleveland tonight, “Yeah, I guess that’s a worthy opponent. So, looking forward to that game.”
Written by Jacob Tobey for CLNS Media and CelticsBlog.
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