April 27, 2016
The hook here is not the Atlanta Hawks closing out the series against the Boston Celtics. The hook I am referring to is the one that may be coming for Isaiah Thomas after the 2 jabs he has taken with ankle sprains in consecutive games. With game 4 and game 5 concluding with Thomas experiencing a “tweak” to his left ankle, you can almost feel the knock out blow coming.
I love boxing and I love boxing analogies. I am currently reading Gary Vee’s book jab, jab, jab, right hook; I hit the heavy bag 2 or 3 times per week; and look forward to boxing matches more than almost any sport aside from football. The beauty of boxing is that once you really understand it, you can predict what is coming. For me, injuries are very similar. When I see a good boxer working their jab all fight; I know a straight right is coming. Once the straight right starts landing, you can expect the left hook. It’s a natural progression in the combination.
With Isaiah Thomas who seems to have a weak left ankle, there is also a natural progression. An ankle that proves to be weak will ask for help. This help may come in the form of taping or bracing; it may come in the form of asking his other joints to chip in a do a little more work. Either scenario will eventually end poorly. A joint that is helped too much causes an overall disruption in the chain of joints and heightens the chance of injury. A joint that is injured and not supported enough to protect it from further injury will eventually suffer a more serious injury. This means that Thomas is likely headed for a more serious ankle sprain or possibly a knee or foot injury on that left side. His probability of this happening will continue to progress if the Boston Celtics season can be extended and Brad Stevens continues his trend of playing his guards for huge minutes.
If you are investing in Thomas for fantasy basketball or picking the Celtics to tie this series up; I would at least consider that Isaiah Thomas is approaching red flag territory with his injury probability; and without him the Celtics do not have much of a chance.
Remember that Injury Science is real and these injuries are not just bad luck or random. While I may not have a hard data print out to show you Isaiah Thomas’ exact risk for injury (yet), you can trust that all the warning signs are there. The best thing for Thomas’ ankle will be a long rest. So while his mind will be pushing for game 7, his body may be shutting down for the off-season.