It’s crazy to think that just two years ago, Isaiah Thomas was on top of the NBA.


Averaging nearly 30 points per game, Thomas carried a young, promising Celtics team to the Eastern Conference Finals where they eventually fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers in a five-game struggle. However, the future seemed bright. Then came the trade. In the summer of 2017, the Celtics completed a trade that shipped a Thomas to Cleveland in exchange for Kyrie Irving.

Now, Thomas is on a one-year, veterans minimum contract with the Denver Nuggets and is fighting for another chance to prove himself in the NBA. But when looking at the Nuggets current roster and how well they are playing, It’s tough for me to see a situation where Isaiah is getting not only consistent shots but consistent minutes.

Obviously, the starting backcourt of Jamal Murray and Gary Harris will remain unchanged (once Harris returns from injury). And coming off the bench, Denver has second-year point guard, Monte Morris. And through 26 games, Morris has played extremely well. Although he is only averaging 9.7 points per game, Morris is shooting 46% from the field and 40% from behind the arc. For an extremely young player to be that efficient of a scorer, it’s safe to say that the only change in Morris’ minutes would be for the better.


Then there’s Malik Beasley and Torrey Craig. Although Torrey Craig is listed as a 6’7″ small forward, the Nuggets have recently been utilizing him as a shooting guard in a very “big” starting lineup. And although he isn’t great offensively, Craig is solid defensively and Malone is clearly very fond of him as he continues to insert him into the starting lineup. As for Beasley, he is much more consistent and just as efficient as Morris. Currently, Beasley is averaging a career-high 8.3 points per game on 46% shooting from the field and 40.6% from behind the arc. Nearly identical numbers to Morris, Beasley is yet another player that will remain in the lineup and eat up 20+ minutes per game.

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It’s also worth noting that Nuggets just agreed to a deal with three-point sharpshooter, Nick Young. And although Young will likely be a bench-warmer, he could also eat up some minutes, especially when the team needs some quick threes and want someone who will shoot it regardless of everything else happening on the court.

With all of this in mind, it’s hard for me to see a scenario where Thomas walks in the middle of the season and is playing any more than (maybe) 10 minutes per game. Even that could be a stretch. The Nuggets simply have too many solid role players who come off the bench and they are probably not getting enough minutes as it is. Barring any major setback where the Nuggets are threatening to fall out of the playoff picture, there’s really no point to switch up the lineup just to accommodate a former all-star who has no commitment to the organization past this season. Regardless, I hope the best for Thomas and hopefully, he can one day return to his former glory.

Scores

Grizzlies- 99, Nuggets- 105

Wizards- 101, Pacers- 109

Pistons- 102, 76ers- 116

Pelicans- 100, Celtics- 113

Kings- 108, Bulls- 89

Cavaliers- 92, Bucks- 108

Jazz- 113, Thunder- 122

Magic- 76, Mavericks- 101

Clippers- 123, Suns- 119

Timberwolves- 108, Warriors- 116

Heat- 105, Lakers- 108

Tuesday’s Games

Trail Blazers @ Rockets (Prediction: Rockets win)

Suns @ Spurs (Prediction: Spurs win)

Raptors @ Clippers (Prediction: Clippers win)

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