Isiah Takes The High Road on Dream Team

OKLAHOMA CITY — For all the criticism he’s taken over the years from all corners about all things, Isiah Thomas has a right to be upset about not being a part of the greatest collection of basketball stars ever assembled.

There’s a reason the splendid documentary, “The Dream Team”  presented by Right Guard, on NBA TV last night addressed Isiah’s snub as early in the program as it did.

And that’s also why his Isiah’s Twitter response, some 20 years later of course, resonates with me:

“Today, like all Americans, I congratulate the Dream Team on their anniversary. I am proud of my career in the NBA and have fond memories of going head to head with all the members of the Team. I can’t speak to the selection process as I wasn’t involved. But 20 years later, their gold medal is still a momentous achievement.”

Even if Thomas is as bitter as any one of us would be if we’d have been snubbed for what could have been the most magical moment of our career, the fact that he chose to take the higher road makes it much easier to digest.

Anyone that disputes Isiah’s worthiness, based on his basketball merits alone, needs a history lesson in the game. (Think of it in contemporary terms and imagine someone picking a “Dream Team” starting with LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Kevin Durant, but Chris Paul gets snubbed somehow.)

Michael Jordan was in a class of his own at that time, so it makes sense that the first call was made to him. But after Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, Isiah should have been the fourth pick of the selection committee.

And no matter how bitter some of those guys were towards Isiah and his Bad Boys Pistons for the things that went on during the NBA season, they realize now where he stands in the history of the game and that he should have been in that Dream Team mix.

“Isiah should have been on the team,” Clyde Drexler said in a radio interview yesterday. “He was the best point guard in the league. The selection committee made a mistake.”

To their credit, it’s the only mistake they made!

*** If you missed “The Dream Team” on NBA TV last night, it will re-air on June 15 at 10:30 p.m., June 16 at 12 a.m. and June 17: 4 p.m. (All times ET) ***


  1. Triniman65 says:

    Isiah Thomas is one of the greatest PG to ever play in the NBA. Anyone that disputes that needs only look at his career stats. Besides his stats anyone who ever saw him play in his prime knows how tough he was and how much he hated to lose. There is a difference between loving winning and hating to lose. Everybody loves to win, but true greats hate to lose. It’s the difference between Kobe and Lebron in my opinion. Jordan hated to lose as much as Isiah. They are actually very similar. This is why they didn’t get along. I have no doubt that if he situation were reversed and Isiah had an opportunity to see Jordan left off the Dream Team he would have done it. They are both petty people, hold grudges and want to impose their will. It just so happens that Jordan had he upper hand in this scenario. However, no one who knows the game can seriously dispute the fact that Isiah Thomas should have been on that team, not even Jordan.

  2. JustOMatic! says:

    There was no mistake. They did right with not selecting Thomas… You have a guy no one likes of the players on team already and you’re trying to keep “The Essence” (MJ) on the team…. easy twice over. and he was going to be the PG of team?? Don’t really care about his stats.. He woulda been that “smudge” on those brand new “Crisp” white shoes you just bought! Lol They did a wonderful job without him!

  3. Jayd says:

    After all this talk about Isiah, I think they actually made 2 BIG mistakes. Not having Isiah Thomas on the Dream Team but instead Stockton and not having Shaquille O’ Neal instead of Laettner on the team. At the time and generation, those 2 players definitely were worthy enough and would’ve made the ultimate Dream Team. Another good argument can also be Wilkins instead of Mullin, just saying, your thoughts everyone???

  4. katkylejam09 says:

    EGO – Everyone’s Got Opinions and as for me, I was very fortunate to witness the greatness of the Dream Team then and the respect all the teams had for them. Everyone was in awe that even players of the opposing teams wants to be photographed while guarding Jordan and Co. As what coach Daly said – “It was a majestic team”. As for Isiah Thomas not been included at that time is beyond me. I think it’s not about the position coz almost eveyone on that team can play multiple positions..could have been personal grudges with jordan et al but that could’ve been a great opportunity to patch things up between those guys. It would’ve been easier if it was an all NBA Team – nothing against Laetneer really, i know he had a sublime season with Duke at that time but i didn’t get it why UsaBasketball even considered including a college player when it should have been a collection of the best NBA players at that time,and Thomas or Dominique Wilkins could have easily taken that spot (unfortunately for mr. Wilkins, he was also snubbed and was not included in the 50 greatest players). For me Thomas deserved to be included on that team and that it was a “deliberate mistake” by UsaB-ball. But at any rate, that team will always be special for a true basketball fan.

  5. The Real Deal says:

    To end all speculations about this Isiah Thomas snub, y\all have to read the book “When The Game Was Ours” by Magic Johnson and Larry Bird…It tells their the real reason why Isiah Thomas was snubbed. And YES, Michael was on hand about it…but you must read the entire story on that book and you will know that it is not ONLY Michael…but almost ALL of the team doesn’t want Isiah, including Magic himself and Larry…

  6. Andrew says:

    Well, Isiah should be on the team with Wilkins to replace Laetner and Mullin. Since Wilkins injured, I will take Mullin back on the team or Webber, since he and Hurley are the stars on the college team the only team that beat the Dream Team. Laetner is better than Kemp, Mourning and Shaq that time when selection of the Dream Team started. Despite al, of that, a team need a teamwork and chemistry among the players, so it’s best to left out Isiah from the team. Miss the dream team 1. The next gen of dream team keep getting worse and worse. Dream team 1 are better than Dream Team 2. Dream team 2 are better than Dream team 3, so on.

    • lordkrimson says:

      It was pretty much Dream team 2 that beat dream team 1 . as far as the rest of your post…What?

  7. Denzo says:

    I could fix Isiah’s problem with 2 words.. Christian laitner!

  8. niquefreak21 says:

    why was chris mullin on the team and not dominique wilkins – thats the real question

  9. Neutron says:


  10. Steve says:

    You hve to realize it wasn’t just MJ who didn’t want him it was also Scotty Pipen and Malone who didn’t want him. Not alot of the other players were fond of him either (Majic Bird Stcckton)

    • Van says:

      The real truth of the matter is that you don’t always get to choose who is on your team. As adults, cohabitating and forming a cohesive bond while they focused on a common goal should have been paramount in their minds rather than their petty egos. People, learn to stop wearing your feelings on your sleeves!!!

  11. AirJordan91 says:

    If you ask now every member of the Dream Team, they would all say Thomas is one of the top 10 PGs of all time. Jordan would today say that also! For YEARS now, it has been known and said many times that MJ was the main person responsible for why Thomas was not selected for the team. Thomas should have been on the team and they all realize now that it was a mistake. And I agree with in the article that Thomas at that point of time should have been selected 4th for the team, or no further than 5th.

  12. Christiaen says:

    Isiah Thomas in PG-terms: one of the better in history.
    The issue was chemistry, guys. Imagine all those ego’s together in a hotel for 3 weeks, and you have one guy on the team that no one really likes, let alone hate for whatever reasons.
    As for Laetner, at that time, if it was necessary to add a college player, he was the most logical pick.
    His career might nog have turned out like expected, but he has the full right to claim his spot on that team at that particular time.
    I personnally would have chose a full nba-players team, but what the heck…I’m still in awe when I remember this Dream Team playing 20 years ago. The pace, the athleticism,….unmatched!
    And it’s not that i’m missin’ Isiah Thomas on that team.
    The game of basketball soared to new heights thanks to them!

  13. Andrew says:

    oh come on isiah, yes you were brilliant and yes you probably deserved a place on the team and if Magic didnt play you would have been there, but with that team i could have played point and they still would have won by 20 each game!!!!

  14. maberik says:

    i still think isiah not stockton deserved to be on that team . he lead his team to 2 championships and has the skill to take over the game. the dream team is the collection of the best superstars in the NBA in that era, just unfortunate that michael didn’t like isiah because they were rivals in the east

  15. beyonderhawk says:

    You know it’s sad to see that after so many years big men still can’t get along like grown men but yet they let there childhood ego get in the way! Of course isiah was snubbed and yes obviously it had to do with Jordan! As much as Jordan was great isiah Thomas and the piston had his number for a few years and I guess his bitterness got the best of him! Fair is fair whether you like the guy or not history and stats will show isiah deserves to be on any dream team from the nba cause he was definitely one of the top five best players during those times and certainly better than Clyde the glide drexler! And that’s a fact chek your nba history on who isiah Thomas really was as a player before you speak and sound Like fouls to the ones who really know……..

  16. kirk montilla says:

    thomas or christian who?

  17. phamie says:

    MICHAEL JORDAN, the committee is definitely correct of choosing MJ instead of Thomas.
    Look what happen, after all MJ became the greatest player of all time.
    and that determine why the committee is right in choosing MJ because he deserved it!

  18. Mike says:

    Ability and titles are not the only factors that were and should have been considered when the Dream Team was formed. Character trumps both ability and career success, all other things being equal. Zeke had such poor character, that even his coach, Daily, didn’t want him on the team

    • Van says:

      That, my friend, is a blatant lie regarding Daly. And, when you speak to a person’s character, which one cheated on his wife and she sued him for divorce and lots of money? I think infidelity speaks more to one’s character than does an extra dose of testosterone on a basketball court. ijs

  19. Bok says:

    Isiah’s a great player, no doubt about it. But he’s not a perfect fit for the team despite his talents. As for Laettner, I would have picked either Kemp, Shaq, C-Webb or Zo instead.

  20. ver says:


  21. Ward says:

    Isaiah Thomas DID NOT deserve to be on the Dream Team! He was just a normal Point Guard who played on a Good, but not great team with the Pistons! You could put pretty much any starting point guard from any team during that era and the results would have been the same. I felt the players that were picked for that team were the best players in the World at that time and 3 or 4 of them are still the best players in the world now. I felt like if you wanted to talk Point Guards that should have been on that team during the 1992 year, then you should have been talking about Kevin Johnson who played for Phoenix, I am not a Phoenix Sun fan nor a Kevin Johnson fan, but he was a better player than Isiah was, Isiah was more famous for what he did to Michael Jordan in Jordan’s first All-Star Game as well as Kissing Magic Johnson on the cheek during the Finals, and just because he played on the Bad Boys Detroit team than being famous for his basketball skills. He JUST WAS A NORMAL POINT GUARD who played in the NBA, pretty much like Chris Paul today, you want to talk special Point Guard, look at Irving from Cleveland, Jason Kidd, Deron Williams, Unique players who had unique skills for a NBA point gurard.

  22. Bobby says:

    Isaiah definitely deserved to be on the Dream Team but his character as a person did him in as he killed his relationships with MJ and even his good friend Magic. This character has revealed itself even more in the years after his retirement given how his career has gone since then. On another note, Shaq was the best college player then and should have been on instead of Laettner. If both Zeke and Shaq were on the Dream Team, that would have been truly the greatest ever.

  23. NBAfan says:

    The way I see it, every team can stand to have 3 point guards in the team…and 3 centers….but this dream team only had 2 pg and 2 centers and a WHOLE LOT of “middle guys” like PF, SF, and SG. Maybe they think that at the time, a PF in the NBA could act as a C in the international game, and they would have been right.

    As great as Isiah was, I think what he brings to the team was not needed in the dream team. At the end of the day, it wasn’t just a collection of the greatest NBA players, it was a team. One can argue Isiah was a bigger name than Mullin, but they needed a designated shooter to go along with Bird….

    One can also argue that Laettner had no business being in that team. If anything, that spot was FOR Isiah until perhaps a few of the players (MJ for sure) threw his weight around and asked not to include him….lucky for Laettner…as we all know, he didn’t even have a star caliber career….

    One can also argue that they didn’t need Jordan, Pippen, AND Drexler…..but Jordan had to be in and Pippen is just that darn versatile, and Drexler is just a likable star so nobody is going to leave him off any list…

    Isiah, didn’t take no s**t from anybody and that made him a few enemies. His talent can’t be doubted….it was politics more than anything else.

    I’d say Jordan’s drill-sergeant like toughness and competitiveness he learned from Isiah. He had to learn it…to beat Isiah….

  24. NBATrueFan says:

    Anybody who thinks he got snubbed doesn’t seem to realize Magic and Stockton were already on the team, and they’re better then Thomas ever was.

    • lordkrimson says:

      No collectively they weren’t Im still wondering where Stocton is getting all this support. Until he gets a ring and a post season MVP this is not even worthy of conversation. I would not say Magic was a better point guard But I will say he was a better basketball player(all around).

  25. BURNSY_11 says:

    Wow some of you people are crazy!!

    Race selection? Wow… Why does that get thrown out in 2012?

    Either way, Laettner was selected as he was the collegiate player of the year, if it was Shaq, then im sure he would’ve been selected. I don’t know why people keep harping on that.

    The team was great, they won, they inspired! I look forward to the upcoming London games, i love internation basketball. I always hope for america to win as i like watching them play, however its a really wide open pool now!

    Australia arent going to be competing for a medal but as long as they have a crack that is all you can do.

    So Isaiah missed out on selection on the dream team in 1992, who is going to miss out this year that would eventually be a “snub”? Every year with All-star teams there are “Snubs”. But there are only so many roster spots that can be picked so deal with it!

  26. Dramey says:

    Isiah Thomas, one of the best point guards ever? Really? He was a very good player but shouldn’t even be mentioned in the top 10 players, let alone top 5. There were two point guards in the league better at the time. Magic and John Stockton. Some people might have even picked KJ first. The right decision was mad there. Who you going to 0keep out for him, Chris Mullen? Nope cold blooded shooter.

    As far as Laettner, he was just coming off of two college Championships in which he was the bona-fide star of those teams. Shaq was a more dominant, intimidating player but Laettner earned his spot. Shaq never even made it to the final four. (I am a huge Shaq fan too). Chris Webber had more of an argument (at the time) than Shaq.

    • lordkrimson says:

      Im curious, who are your other 7 point guards that were better than Zeke? I am amazed at the amount of HATE that he is getting and these comparisons…LOL. Unless they have a Finals mvp and multiple All-star mvps seriously there is no comparison. I can not fathom the concept of an INJURED Stockton vs. Isiah being a conversation that sober people are having. Ironically when the dream team lost to the college players it was speed that killed them, something Zeke had in spades. The dude was the Truth simple as that. But there was no particular need for any particular player that includes Jordan. Hell I could have been on the team and it would have mad 1 bit of difference.

      • i2k says:

        surely these 7 are better.

        Jerry West
        John Stockton
        Magic Johnson
        Chris Paul
        Oscar Robertson
        Jason Kidd
        Gary Payton
        Steve Nash
        Bob Cousy

      • lordkrimson says:

        First of all no, second did you reall include jason kidd , steve nash and chris paul as players that were better than Isiah….really? Really?

  27. at1212b says:

    Sorry, people should educate themselves on this before speaking.

    Magic Johnson was the primary person behind this ‘snub’. He also convinced MJ who was generally hesitant on joining the Dream Team that he would make sure Isiah was not on it. This is because according to Magic, Isiah spread rumors/joking that Magic Johnson was doing homosexual things leading to him contracting HIV.

    The most important thing for the Dream Team was not talent, but the TEAM CHEMISTRY in managing all those egos, expectations. Isiah Thomas was known as a DIVIDER. Especially to Magic, and MJ easily went along with it following the infamous 1991 ECF walk-off BEFORE the game officially ended (huge disrespect, especially when MJ always went over to Detroit to congratulate them after getting eliminated 4 times.).

    “MAGIC JOHNSON: Nobody on that team wanted to play with him,” writes Johnson, et al. “. . . Michael didn’t want to play with him. Scottie [Pippen] wanted no part of him. Bird wasn’t pushing for him. Karl Malone didn’t want him. Who was saying, ‘We need this guy?’ Nobody.”

    Worst of all, Johnson writes, he was told Thomas spread rumors he was gay after Johnson’s 1991 announcement he was HIV-positive.”

  28. Beno says:

    Hmmm, did the Dream Team ever lose a game or even come close?
    What about team chemistry?
    I say they made ZERO mistakes constructing the team and ZERO mistakes on the court.

  29. Gord Downie says:

    I agree that Laettner was a bad choice but they knew he wouldnt be playing lol. They could have had Wilkins, Reggie Miller, ‘Zo, or if they wanted a college kid they could have went with Shaq or C-Web!

  30. Inamikgreg says:

    It’s simple. Who would you rather have on the team, Jordan or Isiah? Isiah Thomas defintiely belonged on the Dream Team but it was no shock that he wasn’t included. The guy just made too many enemies amongst his peers with his “street” mentality (Pippen was right when he said that Isiah was the ringleader of the Bad Boys), the biggest of which was Jordan. I don’t know if Isiah was jealous of Jordan because he was bigger than Isiah in Chi-town (which is Isiah’s hometown). Not only did Isiah led the way when the Bad Boys left the court early when the Bulls swept them but he also led that infamous “freezeout” of Jordan in the ’85 All-Star Game when Jordan was a rookie. Other players such as Malone and Pippen didn’t want him on the team either. And notice that Magic never came to his aid. The two were once buddies but Magic felt betrayed by Isiah when after announcing he was HIV positive (according to Magic) and some gay rumors started coming out, Isiah was asking around to find out if the rumors were true. Their relationship was never the same after that.

    • Van says:

      Just a bit of fact-checking may be in order. Majic and Zeke were “best friends” for the longest time. They actually fell out during one of the championship series (’89/90′ OR ’88/89′) when they played against each other. Majic hit Zeke during a play (they had just kissed each other before the game started) and Zeke threw the ball at Majic and hit him. Reportedly, they have not spoken since that occurrence. It had nothing to do with HIV and telling anything about HIV/gay or whatever.

  31. Big Cain says:

    Not only was Zeke snubbed. But what about Shaq and DOMINIQUE WILKINS? Dominique should have had Mullins spot!

    • xIIx DELTA xIIx says:

      Shaq for Laettner? absolutely!!!, also I remember that Dominique was included in the Team but sadly he teared his Achilles few months before.

  32. Arceneaux says:

    I hate when people asking hurtful questions like this. He felt the same way anybody would feel. Would you go home and ask your ten year old boy/girl why didn’t you make the team? And how do they feel about it? And how do you feel about the other players that made the team? SENSELESS

  33. Victor Manoel says:

    Another mistake was made, too, even bigger: they selected Christian Laettner, can you believe?

  34. teezyfree says:

    I totally agree with you Big Joe,you nailed it right on the head…good job

  35. Panamaniac says:

    I thought Isaih was not even in the conversation because they already had their PGs. I thought that Dominique Wilkins was the choice for the last spot but since he had recently teared his achilles they moved on to Laettner. Why Laettner when there were more pro players that better fit the team… I dont know but that’s what I remember.

  36. Slider821 says:

    You guys are talking about Isiah not getting the spot becuase Jordan did…I thought it was more due to Magic’s beef with Isiah for spreading the HIV rumor and speaking bad about Magic becuase of it? I haven’t seen the documentary, just wondering.

    • BCL says:

      Good point. I think that the Magic/Zeke beef had something to do with Magic not lobbying for his boy. But USA basketball was not going to take a chance on losing Jordan and to a lesser extent Pippen by putting Isiah on the team. They all know that career-wise he deserved to be there (Championships, All-Star MVPs, etc). Not only was he a top 3 point guard at the time, who could shoot, defend and create his own offense if necessary, he was also the leader of the last ‘dynasty’ before the MJ era. But on top of all of that he lost his opportunity to play in the 80 Olympics due to the boycott and the head coach was also his Pistons head coach, Chuck Daly. Magic did right by not publicly saying he didn’t want his “best friend” on the team and kept relatively quiet. This team was less about getting back the gold medal (that was a forgone conclusion) and more about spreading the int’l popularity of the game and this was the perfect vehicle. To me they should have just made it all pro players instead of throwing in a ‘token’ college player even if it was Laettner (who some thought was the next Bird) The other snub in my opinion was Dominique. To me this team was about the growth of hoops in the 80’s and I think the world wanted to see the best, most popular and most exciting players from the NBA who helped to spur that growth. Based on that, Dominique qualifies. Since they couldn’t put Akeem down, Isiah should have been put on instead of Laettner and I would put Dominique on instead of Pippen. While Pippen was certainly more well rounded, The Dream Team should not have had any “2nd Fiddles” included. Pip could have waited until ’96 to get his gold medal, but your point about the Magic-Isiah subplot is valid and probably was a smaller factor.

  37. SteIreland says:

    The example of a Chris Paul snub is a little off. Actually snubbing Kobe would be closer. Isiah had 2 championships at that point (Kobes the only one in that list with rings) Comparing Isiah to the ringless Chris Paul might make sense skill-wise but you got to give the rings the respect they deserve.

    Can you imagine that Dream Team with Shaq???? Its the only downer from that whole thing.

    Dominique Wilkins surely deserves a shout-out here, no???

  38. Big Joe says:

    It is not all about who is better than one another. Isaiah was clearly better than Stockton at that time (who is essentially who he would have replaced if he was put on the team). But without Stockton who knows if Karl Malone would have played. Not to mention that Stockton was a facilitator not a ball hog. Isaiah was a “Bad Boy” at that time and Team USA did not want that image (they even had to reiterate that to Barkley before going into it.) Isaiah had fueds with Michael who was top prority on that team and would you rather have…….Jordan AND Scottie or Isaiah? Jordan and Scottie might not have played and Karl might not have played if he didnt have his sidekick so I will take Stockton, Malone, Jordan, and Pippen over a point guard with an attitude any day.

    THE ONLY MISTAKE THE DREAM TEAM MADE WAS PUTTING LAETTNER ON THAT TEAM INSTEAD OF USING SHAQ OR EVEN MOURNING AS THE COLLEGIATE SELECTION! If Shaq took Laettners spot they would have been even bigger and better and it would have made a team of all 12 guys hall of famers instead of 11 out of 12 when it was all said and done.

    • Sea Pea says:

      You nailed it Joe. It’s all politics and compromising. More to do with the selection committees fears than what the players said or didn’t say.

      • Niko says:

        Sea Pea.

        Your right an all black team isn’t a representation of “America”. But thats because of the ignorance of the people in the country. Proper representation “should” be the countries BEST, but white americans would never admit to it. Sad, sad country.

    • Carlo says:

      It’s Michael Jordan all the way baby!

    • wadefan says:

      you got most of that right.. all up until you said laettner shouldn’t have been picked.. his career ended up a lot worse than shaq’s, sure.. but his college career was much much better..

  39. Shaq Daddy says:

    That was not the only mistake they made. For their front-court, Christian Laettner should never have made the team ahead of Shaquille o”Neal. That in my honest opinion, was te biggest mistake.

    The only difference was Shaq was not even in the NBA at he time and Zek had achieved a great deal with the Pistons. However Shaq would have aided the team more than anyone else left out.

    • Sea Pea says:

      Hate to say it but race was a factor. It’s okay though. An all black team is not a true representation of America or American basketball.

      • Robinsn says:

        Race!? Really? With Larry Bird, Chris Mullin, and John Stockton they did not pick Laetner ecouse he was white.Laetner had good history with team USA and had one of the best college careers in the last 30 years. Also, he fit in better as a 12th man. Think Shaq would have been fine in that role behind Ewing and Robinson? Race bait elswhere.

      • Patrick Harry says:

        I agree it was a race issue and that he was a Duke star, but lets not forget the team also had Larry Bird, Chris Mullin and John Stockton! it was not an all-black team when they chose Laettner

    • Nate says:

      OK, that’s just stupid. Now that you know how Laettner and Shaq’s career turned out, of course you’re going to be saying they should’ve picked Shaq. What if Shaq’s career went sour like Laettner’s in the NBA, and Laettner actually became the player everyone thought he was going to be in the NBA. I’m sure you wouldn’t be saying that now. At that time Laettner was having one of the best college careers, so it wasn’t a mistake to take Laettner for the last position.

  40. noname says:

    Drexler is wrong…..was not the only mistake…
    they chose to take along the “politically correct” Christian Leatner from Duke instead of Shaquille o’ neal from LSU.
    I dont care what nobody says….that was foul play
    thank goodness Shaq made everybody (including Christian) pay for it the rest of his career.

    • Sea Pea says:

      Shaq shouldn’t have been on it, but Mourning should have. Shaq just wasn’t that good at the time.

  41. Bobby says:

    All’s fair in love and war. Jordan didn’t take first blood, Isaiah did.

  42. Rocks says:

    A mistake? Clearly, it was not a mistake. It was deliberate. How do you forget one of the best pointguards to ever hold a basketball? If he was dead, yes. But that’s the past. Let’s move on!

    • Sea Pea says:

      You are overating him. He is not even a top 10 all-time point guard. He was a great point guard on a great team. I think of him more like Tony Parker. He was just hot at the moment because of back to back championships. Catching the bulls when they weren’t quite there yet and the Celtics on their decline. It was his time which means for that reason he should have been on the team.

      • Timo says:

        Sea Pea, that’s like saying Barkley, Malone, Stockton, and Ewing weren’t good enough because they never won championships. This is about individual excellence. Isiah should be in the top 5 point guards in anybody’s list. Why? Because he is the face of the modern point guard. Like most of the dream team, they were the evolution of past greats.

        The fast-dribbling, direction-changing, drive-first, scoring mentality is mostly based off of his game. Any NBA PG who was a kid in the 80’s modeled their game after Isiah. Younger guys who play now may not think of it, but they have Thomas’s qualities like: Rose, Westbrook,Parker, Jennings, Ellis, Deron Williams, the list goes on. For a period of time before Isiah, point guards never had the killer instinct scoring. Only Oscar comes to mind, but he was much taller than the typical PG.

      • Andre says:

        He’s for sure a top 10 PG and I hate him. When I saw Malone hitting him in the head I stopped and said: ‘It´s Isaiah, no big deal. He deserves it anyway’. But, on court, playing basketball, he’s a top 10 for sure. I dare to say he’s a sure top 3 after the 3pt line was created.

      • illone says:

        @Timo, you’ve got to be kidding, The guys who grew up watching Isaiah Thomas are all out of the league. He’s been out since what, 94. If you’re 30 years old now that means you were 12 when he retired. Not when he was winning championships, but on the decline. How many 30+ PG are there in the league today?

        Derrick Fisher maybe the only still playing Point Gaurd that saw Isaiah Thomas play and he’s backup now. PG is a young mans position these days. No one still playing grew up watching him.

      • Wil says:

        You don’t know basketball at all. Tony Parker is no where near Zeke. He wasn’t called the Miracle Shooter for nothing. no top 10 haha you crazy. from Hardaway to A.I. ask them where they got their game from and who they looked up to.

    • mOstwanted says:


      30+ starting PG who still playing??
      Nash – 38
      Parker – 30

      • wadefan says:

        nash does not play with a shoot first mentality like thomas did.. doesnt help the point

  43. Davi Boruszewski says:

    I think it´s the only mistake they did, yes.

    And probably the worst mistake in the History of Basketball.

    Isaiah was in a higher level than ANY player on the world, proved by several conference finals, championships and hard work.

    Jordan ruled the marketing, Isaiah ruled himself.

    The NBA chose marketing instead of truth.

    • Jay Davidson says:

      C’mon, Man! Isaiah was shafted, for sure- but really? Champions Jordan 6, Thomas 2. ‘Nuff said. I could add MVPs, but what’s the point?

      • Ummm, No... says:

        It was Championships – Jordan 2, Thomas 2. This was 1992, genius.

      • APHX says:

        Jordan didn’t have 6 championships in the Summer of 92′ though….
        Not about who was the better player, because Pippen, Mullin, Drexler could have been left out for Isiah.
        But if Jordan doesn’t want Isiah, and you’re trying to make Basketball grow and grow Internationally… well you take Jordan for all he was is and will forever be to the game.

      • Wil says:

        Jordan didn’t have 6 in 92 so know your history before getting smart. He was the best guard in the game. Yeah Jordan was flash and show with dunks but no one had heart like Zeke.

    • Nate says:

      Lols, so at that time you put Isiah on top of Jordan as a better player? Lols….

      • Van says:

        Actually, even more than Isaiah, there were “real” players who never received the accolades or money that Jordan got just because of the time (era) and marketing strategies, such as Big O (Oscar Robertson) who is named the greatest all around basketballer of the century, Earl “The Pearl” Monroe, and Walter “Clyde” Frazier just to name a few. So, Jordan was just the hype due to marketing, more TV time, and the money he made for the Chicago franchise, the city of Chicago, the NBA, and for himself.

        So, please miss me with the Jordan is/was the greatest. Pluh-eze!!!

  44. Tony says:

    Isn’t it official yet that some of the players insisted he be kept off?

  45. Isiah or Michael? That was an easy call; they HAD to have Jordan on this dream, but didn’t have to have Thomas. Granted, he should have been on the team basketball-wise. But, the same “street mentality” that drove Thomas to greatness also led him to act like a thug at times – walking off the court before the end of the game when the Bulls finally beat them in ’91 is just one example – and kept him off the Dream Team. And it’s exactly why he’s had such a checkered and strange post-playing career. Think about this: since he retired from the Pistons, Thomas hasn’t completed a single contract on any job. Not one. Now, why is that?

    • Nate says:

      Agreed, the Dream Team was about trying to put the best players that could play and get along together well both on and off the court. With Isiah and MJ’s rocky relationship, it’s easy to see that MJ was the better choice if you had to choose one. Not saying that Isiah didn’t deserve to be on the team but just wasn’t the right fit. Now whether we’ll know if he wasn’t the right fit or not none of us will truly know, but what we do know is what this Dream Team did accomplished. So as a Team decision, I think leaving Isiah off the roster was the right choice. As far as Isiah deserving to be on the team, yes of course he deserved it.

      • Ryan says:

        Isiah or Michael???That wasn’t the case. The committee had to choose between Clyde Drexler & Isiah Thomas for the final spot on the team and they agreed to get Clyde.

      • wadefan says:

        no ryan.. it was between isiah and michael.. jordan, presumably didnt want to play with isiah.. jordan was basketball.. basketball was jordan.. the olympic team wasnt going to piss off jordan by including isiah

    • Van says:

      I think personalities should have been excluded as a factor in the determination of team members. Almost all of the members on the “Dream Team” had nasty attitudes at one time/point or another – that is the nature of competitiveness. However, good sportsmanship should have enabled them all to leave all of that on the basketball court once the game/conference final/championship final was complete.

      On a personal level, I’m sure that had much more in common than they had in conflict! Grown men should be able to separate the heat of the moment game issues from real life – ijs.