Isaiah Thomas might be overlooked at times, but he doesn’t want his city being disrespected. To him, Seattle has the best guard talent of anywhere in the country, and if they put together a game (as they’re trying to), he thinks they could probably beat anyone. Besides just standing up for Seattle, Thomas is spending a lot of his summer working out with NBA vets like Jason Terry and getting advice from Damon Stoudamire to hopefully make it in the league with Sacramento.
“I’m just a sponge,” he says of his relationship with Dallas’ Terry. “Everything he says, I just take it all in.”
A few weeks ago, I spent the day out at Reebok Headquarters with Thomas, as well as Terry, Ramon Sessions, Jameer Nelson, John Wall and four high school standouts.
During my time with Thomas, he spoke on Seattle, learning from Stoudamire and being a left-handed player.
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Dime: Talk about your experience coming out here to an event like this, hanging out with younger kids trying to come up and make a name for themselves.
Isaiah Thomas: It’s a blessing man. Everybody is not in this position to come in here and a show company will have your pictures up here like this. I’ve been at Nike. I’ve seen Nike just because it’s in the northwest. But to be flown out here…Everybody’s polite to you. Everybody’s trying to talk to you and just happy to meet you. It’s new to me. So it’s just nice and a blessing for me to be around the older guys like Jason Terry, Jameer Nelson and then to be around the younger guys to look up to guys like me.
Dime: You’ve been working out with Jason for a long time. What are some of the things you’ve learned watching him and other pros?
IT: Just how hard they really work. A guy like him, he gets up at 6 a.m. Workout at 6:30. And then go again at night. For him to accomplish all that he’s accomplished in his career, to be an NBA champion still doing those types of things, that makes you look at it in a different way. These dudes are good for a reason. They work at it. The work ethic that he has kind of rubbed off on me and I just follow his footsteps.
Dime: With the summer leagues going, they got the Goodman League, the Drew League and everybody else. If you took the dudes from Seattle…
IT: Man, we trying. Jamal Crawford got his Pro-Am up here and we trying to get in contact with those leagues to get a game going. I think we got the most talent out of all of them. At least guards, our guards are better than everybody in the league. We have too much firepower.
Dime: You tell that to John?
IT: Oh John know. John know. He might not say it to you guys but he knows. Hopefully we get one of them games going so we can get some national exposure like the Drew League and the Goodman League do.
Dime: When you were coming up, maybe junior or senior year of high school, were you getting a lot of attention?
IT: I mean it was somewhat… mainly on the West Coast though. That’s why it was so good for me to come out here and these camps be on the East Coast for the East Coast guys to see me and showcase my talent. I was so-so. I got love from the West Coast but not really all over until I kinda got in the scene in college and started doing my thing.