Isaiah Thomas' Hip Injury Reportedly Was 'Significant Concern' for Celtics

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistAugust 23, 2017

Boston Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas (4) celebrates his basket with Jae Crowder, left, during the fourth quarter of Game 7 of a second-round NBA basketball playoff series against the Washington Wizards, Monday, May 15, 2017, in Boston. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Charles Krupa/Associated Press

Isaiah Thomas was forced to miss the final three games of May's Eastern Conference Finals with a hip injury. As it turns out, that ailment may have factored into the Boston Celtics' decision to trade him to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday in exchange for Kyrie Irving.  

According to ESPN.com's Jeff Goodman, the Celtics harbored "significant concern" about the state of Thomas' hip before shipping him to the Cavaliers along with Jae Crowder, Ante Zizic and the Brooklyn Nets' 2018 first-round pick.   

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported the Cavaliers are "anxious" to give him a physical but don't hold short-term concerns about the injury. 

Following a 130-86 Game 2 loss to the Cavaliers, the Celtics announced Thomas suffered an aggravation of a right femoral-acetabular impingement with labral tear after he initially injured his hip in March against the Minnesota Timberwolves

Two months after the aggravation occurred, Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge provided an update and said Thomas was "making good progress" in his recovery. 

"He's out on the court; he's shooting," Ainge said, according to the Boston Globe's Adam Himmelsbach. "He's full-speed ahead on the stationary bike and working in the swimming pool. He's progressing nicely."

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During an appearance on The Vertical Podcast with Chris Mannix on Monday (via Celtics Blog), Celtics head coach Brad Stevens said Thomas was scheduled for more checkups before he could be cleared for training camp. 

"He has another follow-up and another scan in the early part of September when he arrives back here out east," Stevens said. "From there we will know the exact timeline."

Thomas has remained steadfast in his belief that he will be back at full strength eventually after opting not to undergo surgery. 

"The hip is great," Thomas told the Boston Herald's Stephen Hewitt. "It's a real slow rehab process, but it's getting better and that's what it's all about."