Last night, as the NBA Draft flashed, whizzed, and banged across ESPN’s screen, all the arguments about whether or not it was a good idea for Isaiah Thomas to leave college were moot. The deadline had passed, the decision had been made, and now judgment would be handed down in the form of a team selecting IT to be a potential point guard of the future.
Today, looking back, we can once again hoot and holler about whether he was right or not, but last night it was all about Isaiah. Rooting for a homegrown kid to have all of his dreams come true after three glorious years playing under Lorenzo Romar at the University of Washington.
I admit, I didn’t think it was a matter of if, but rather when Isaiah would be drafted. I thought it was a given that he’d be a second rounder, maybe somewhere in the 30s or 40s. I certainly wasn’t among those so foolishly idealistic as to think he’d sneak into the first round, as Nate Robinson did those many years ago. But, there was no WAY I’d be in the bowling alley, watching on the flatscreen as the draft slots dwindled into the 50s, frantically trying to read the vice commissioner’s lips with Isaiah Thomas still unpicked.
And yet, there I was. With European after European flying off the board. Guys who were 6’9 who only played facing the basket, behind the 3-point line (like every other European player you’ve ever seen). Isaiah Thomas could CERTAINLY out-rebound these miserable cunts going ahead of him!
Guard after guard, with me exclaiming, “Who is HE?” I have no doubt most will spectacularly flame out.
I left the alley after Pick 59. Sacramento was on the clock as I walked away, telling my oblivious brother, “Isaiah Thomas didn’t get drafted.”
To my utter shock, amazement, and gratitude, I arrived home to hear on sports talk radio that IT had been taken with the final pick. To say I was elated is an understatement. Because at this point, it’s time to stop dwelling on the same “he should have come back for his senior season” argument. It’s over, Johnny, IT’S OVER. At this point, I’m just happy for the kid who will hopefully be given a real shot to make the team.
I know if IT keeps putting in the work, his natural talents will overwhelm the coaches down there. He’s a better overall basketball player right now – scorer, distributer, rebounder, defender – than at least half of the guys who were picked ahead of him. If he gets a shot, I know IT can carve out a real nice career for himself.
Go get ’em, Young Zeke. Remember that feeling of waiting until the bitter end of the draft. Remember all of those teams who passed you over. Remember it, use it, and kick some fuckin’ ass.