Isaiah Thomas 'Not Coming Off the Bench' for Lakers

Jordan Clarkson

Jordan Clarkson

As for Thomas-who hasn't looked quite like himself since returning from a hip injury on January 2-Lakers head coach Luke Walton seemed to indicate the team plans to give him a steady diet of minutes right out of the gate.

The Lakers confirmed Thomas and Cavs forward Channing Frye were joining from Cleveland in exchange for guard Jordan Clarkson and forward Larry Nance Jr. But Cleveland picks up luxury tax relief with this trade this season. The two-time All-Star averaged 14.7 points, but Cleveland went 7-8 in those games.

ESPN's Brian Windhorst notes that with Cleveland taking on long-term money and helping clear cap space, they are wagering that LeBron James decides to stay with the team when he opts out of his contract and becomes a free agent this off-season. Out are Isaiah Thomas, Channing Frye, Jae Crowder, Derrick Rose and Dwyane Wade. "This is a good opportunity for Isaiah". Clarkson is a lifetime 44.2 percent shooter from the field and 33.2 percent from three-point range. Over the season, only Williams (813) has more bench points than Clarkson (732).

Nance is averaging 6.9 points, 5.7 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 1.2 steals per game over his 168-game National Basketball Association career.

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"This trade is also a reflection of our continuing commitment to invest in our roster in ways that help us evolve and compete at the highest level now and into the future,"Altman said".

"Speculating or being upset about it before it happens does you, does the organization, does anybody no good", he said Wednesday. We're just pawns in the game at this point. "I've always felt like that's where his heart and his mind was and I think it's going to be great for him". On top of all that, we still can not take Thomas' play for granted.

After three straight Finals appearances and a title in 2016, the Cavs are now third in the East.

A day after the Cavaliers overhauled their roster with a tornado of trades that ripped through the NBA, James didn't dwell on what's lost, who's no longer around or how much time Cleveland has left to salvage its season.

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