Isaiah Thomas Underwent Hip Procedure, Aiming For 2020/21 Return

Free agent point guard Isaiah Thomas underwent a resurfacing procedure on his right hip in May and expects to be fully healthy for the start of the 2020/21 season, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic (via Twitter).

Thomas has dealt with hip problems for the last few seasons, battling a bone-on-bone issue and “relentless” pain, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, who notes that the latest procedure is designed to address the injury by including a “unique kind of artificial joint” in the hip.

“It’s like night and day for me,” Thomas told Wojnarowski. “There’s no more pain. I’ve got my full range of motion. For three years, I was trying to play the best players in the world on one leg. I needed help from my kids to put my socks on in the morning.

“Now, I can lift weights. I can squat low. I can work out twice a day. I’m able to cut and move and stop, able to cut and go. I feel like I’m 31 years old again. And now, I have scientific evidence to show that.”

Dr. Edwin Su, an orthopedist based in New York, performed the procedure on Thomas and told ESPN that it already appears to be paying dividends.

“Before the surgery, you could see he was clearly favoring his right side; and that it was painful,” Su said. “It was natural to avoid pushing off and landing off (the left). Four months post-op, we are seeing higher loads and seeing symmetry between the right and left. … Now, he’s playing like he’s eight months out from surgery, not just four. He’s such a hard worker. He’s moving quickly, and able to jump and pivot.”

Since averaging 28.9 PPG and 5.9 APG for the Celtics during the 2016/17 season, Thomas has been limited by health problems and has seen his production drop off significantly.

In 84 games for the Cavaliers, Lakers, Nuggets, and Wizards over the last three seasons, he has recorded just 12.8 PPG and 3.8 APG on 38.6% shooting, and has been rated poorly by defensive metrics. He was waived by the Clippers in February after Washington sent him to L.A. in a deadline deal, and hasn’t been on an NBA roster since then.

It remains to be seen when exactly the NBA 2020’s free agency period will begin and whether coronavirus-related restrictions will prevent Thomas from working out in front of teams. However, the veteran point guard is looking to prove he’s still capable of being a reliable part of a club’s rotation.

“In some ways, the time off because of COVID was a blessing in disguise for my career,” Thomas told Wojnarowski. “It allowed me to take the time to get this procedure done, and get back physically to a level I need to be to compete in the league. I made the right decision to do this, and I’m anxious to show people I can contribute to a team again.”

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15 thoughts on “Isaiah Thomas Underwent Hip Procedure, Aiming For 2020/21 Return

  1. Simmons>Russ

    If he could swallow his pride and return to Boston as a back up to Kemba he would make them a huge threat for a title.
    It would be a feel good story of Thomas returning to the team which made him great and them winning a hip together.

    Think the chances of this happening tho is 1%.

    Still think he would be alright as a back up on the right team. Maybe Philly, Houston, Phoenix, or Utah if they can’t afford to bring back Clarkson

    • illowa

      Return to the team he literally gave everything to and they turned their back once he was damaged goods. Must be nice to be gordan hayward.

      • Curtisrowe

        Yeah, I mean, why wouldn’t the Celtics want to sign someone who was damaged goods to a big contract?

        • Simmons>Russ

          Yeah kinda goes both ways. IT gave his everything but his everything’s as never going to be a ring. That team was built around him and once the opportunity came to build around Tatum and Brown the C’s jumped at it and rightly so. End of the day IT was a bench PG before the Celtics and after the Celtics kicked him he’s been a free agent most the time so in theory the best thing for both parties could be meeting back up. IT gets the role of back up to Kemba and who’s the team and players inside and out. He gets the chance of good minted and a decent role which he obviously can’t get elsewhere. Celtics get a very good back up PG who they know has preformed for them before.

          If you looking back on this is 20 years time IT will have wished he returned and got those apologies, put his feelings aside, become a fan favourite again and had the chance to end his career on a winning note. Not just being sour bouncing around the free agent market.

    • El Don

      I never thought IT4 was a proud guy, usually the ones with the excess pride are the Celtics, right?
      Anyway, if he gets the chance IT4 is gonna bounce back, he can still play a big part in a team!

  2. davethemailman

    Best of luck to Isaiah Thomas. I hope he does whatever is best for his health and family. Hopefully he has enough money to be set no matter what his basketball future holds, even if nobody decides to sign him. I loved his attitude when he was with the Lakers and he was always fun to watch. What a sad turn his career took. Nothing is guaranteed, and in normal life you can have a hip replacement surgery and be fine, but as a professional athlete that is asking a lot. Good luck, Isaiah!

  3. davethemailman

    I should have said “hip surgery”. I don’t know exactly what was done. Sorry.

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