After Friday’s 106-101 loss on the road to the Portland Trail Blazers, the Los Angeles Lakers fell to 37-30 and into the dreaded No. 7 seed of the Western Conference.
If the seed holds, it means the defending NBA champions would be the top line for the 2021 NBA play-in tournament—a place Anthony Davis, LeBron James and the rest of the Lakers don’t want to be.
One key NBA free agent, however, wasted little time sending out his credentials on social media following the defeat: point guard Isaiah Thomas.
Man I could help them Lakers boys during this time!!!!
— Isaiah Thomas (@isaiahthomas) May 8, 2021
Isaiah Thomas has had a brilliant NBA career following his college days at the University of Washington. In 528 games and 361 starts from 2011 to 2021, he has averaged 18.1 points, 2.4 rebounds and 4.9 assists while shooting 43.5 percent from the floor, 36.3 percent from the arc and 87.2 percent from the charity stripe.
After playing in 40 games (and 37 starts) with the Washington Wizards during a pandemic-shortened 2019-20 campaign, where he averaged 12.2 points on 40.8 percent shooting, Thomas moved into free agency. He signed a 10-day contract with the New Orleans Pelicans in mid-April, and in three games scored 10, 11 and two points on 33.3 percent shooting from the field with little volume.
Perhaps with a bit of late-season run and rhythm, Isaiah Thomas could indeed help the Lakers—who still have LeBron James, Talen Horton-Tucker, Dennis Schroeder and Jared Dudley all sidelined with various ailments.
Time is of the utmost essence for the Lakers, too, if they want to avoid a play-in fate. Five games remain before the start of the 2021 NBA Playoffs, and Los Angeles has to face Phoenix, New York, Houston, Indiana and New Orleans in the last 10 days.
The Phoenix Suns would love nothing more than to make the Lakers’ lives more difficult in the playoffs while rushing for the top seed of the Western Conference, and the New York Knicks are playing some of the hottest, most consistent basketball in the league behind Julius Randle, RJ Barrett and Derrick Rose.
Whatever the case is, the Lakers need help, and Thomas is offering up his more-than-serviceable self.