Michael Jordan: Isiah Thomas second-best PG ever, but would've affected Dream Team's harmony




 

Isiah Thomas remains the most controversial exclusion from the Dream Team.

Even decades after the 1992 Olympics, Michael Jordan is still explaining it.

Thomas was a reasonable omission on merit. He wasn't as accomplished as the players - Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Jordan - who made it on career achievements. On a sharp decline from his peak, Thomas was also no longer clearly better than the players who made it on current ability.

Thomas also would've been a reasonable inclusion on merit. He was close in both categories - career accomplishments and current ability. Nobody would've blinked if the combination elevated Thomas onto the team.

But everyone clearly wanted to accommodate Jordan, the NBA's golden boy. And Jordan loathed (loathes) the Bad Boys Pistons after their battles with his Bulls. So, it's hard to believe politics didn't factor in keeping Thomas - a marginal choice - off the roster.

Jordan in "The Last Dance" documentary:

That's high praise from Jordan, especially considering Jordan's animosity toward Thomas. It's also too strong.

I would definitely rank Stephen Curry ahead of Thomas. Curry has more MVPs (two to zero) and championships (three to two) than Thomas. This isn't the first time Jordan slighted Curry.

And that's before getting into more controversial selections like Chris Paul (who has been more effective than Thomas on both ends of the floor but hasn't matched Thomas' deep-playoff accomplishments) and John Stockton (whose peak wasn't quite as high as Thomas' but had a FAR longer prime). I'd rank both ahead of Thomas.

As far as the Dream Team…

Thomas was a fierce competitor who went hard at his opponents. He was interested in beating, not befriending.

But you know else fit that description? Jordan, Johnson, Bird… practically everyone on the Dream Team. Like the rest, Thomas could be affable in certain environments.

Change any member of a 12-person group, and the dynamic changes. The players got along great at the 1992 Olympics. It's hard to imagine it going much better.

But if Thomas were included, it probably wouldn't have gone much differently, either.

Michael Jordan: Isiah Thomas second-best PG ever, but would've affected Dream Team's harmony originally appeared on NBCSports.com

COMMENTS

More Related News

Report: Jamal Crawford signs with Brooklyn Nets ahead of NBA bubble
Report: Jamal Crawford signs with Brooklyn Nets ahead of NBA bubble

NBA Twitter can rest easy tonight. Jamal Crawford found a home.

Josh Gordon is ready to sell you his Super Bowl ring
Josh Gordon is ready to sell you his Super Bowl ring

I hope you have deep pockets…

Steph Curry isn
Steph Curry isn't convinced Black anthem at NFL games solves anything

Steph Curry knows how much his voice means, and he will continue using it for the right causes.

Shaq gives outrageous breakdown of potential Lakers-Warriors matchup
Shaq gives outrageous breakdown of potential Lakers-Warriors matchup

Shaq won't let this debate go.

Michael Jordan, Roy Williams among UNC greats to condemn systemic racism
Michael Jordan, Roy Williams among UNC greats to condemn systemic racism

This is great and important.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: Basketball