Isaiah Thomas reiterates he wants to stay in Boston and wants to get paid

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When you’re wearing Brinks truck slides, you know contract questions are going to come up.

Isaiah Thomas has been clear from the start: He loves being a Boston Celtic and wants to stay with the team where he became an All-NBA player, but he knows next summer’s contract is his one big kick at the can and he wants to get paid. Thomas reiterated all of that speaking at his youth camp, a video of which Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe posted.

“I’m going to play my game. I’m going to play the game the way I know how and play to win, I think everything else will take care of itself. It’s not like I’m going in, ‘it’s a contract year, I’m going to do this’ I’m just going to be myself, it’s the only thing I know how to do. People always say he’s always talking about (the contract), I only talk about it when people bring it up. My time will come, like I say, and when that time comes we’ll make sure we handle it the right way…

“Boston knows where my heart is at, I would love to be back, I would love to be here for years to come. Sometimes this game is a business, and just like the Celtics are going to look out for themselves I gotta do what’s best for my family, and hopefully, that’s here in Boston.”

The first question for Thomas needs to be is his hip healthy? For an undersized player like Thomas, who relies on quickness and having a crafty game, just a little loss of mobility/explosion in his hip could dramatically impact his play. If he is right, the Celtics need to make sure this contract talk doesn’t become a distraction in a year the Celtics could challenge or pass the Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference (not just in the regular season but in the playoffs).

Next summer, it’s going to be interesting to watch the Thomas situation. Normally if a 29-year-old, All-NBA player who averaged 28 points a game came up it would be a no-question max contract (Boston can go five-years, $177 million). Thomas may well be different, teams will be hesitant about that fourth — and for Boston certainly the fifth — year of that contract. Also, in a tight market, can teams come in at less than the $35 million (if he’s All-NBA again)? I would not be shocked to see Thomas get offers of three or four years, maybe in the $85 to $120 million range. That’s a big contract, he’ll make nearly as much in the 2018-19 season as he has his entire career up to that point, but it would not be the max. It will be interesting to watch.

LeBron James’ best play from every game in 2016-17 (VIDEO)

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I’m not sure it’s possible to argue that LeBron James is not the most important player in the NBA, even in 2016-17.

Yes, others have won the MVP award in years past, but each and every postseason you understand just how important LeBron is to every roster he is on. NBA players even voted him as the player they would most secretly want on their team.

That’s why it’s pretty easy to galvanize that opinion when you watch a 20-minute highlight video of LeBron’s best plays from each game of the past season.

Summer is upon us and even preseason seems like a long way off. Thankfully, we will be able to get to see plays like this here in what feels like the near future.

C.J. McCollum’s cab driver had some hilarious opinions on today’s NBA

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I think we’ve all been in the situation that C.J. McCollum found himself in recently.

Whether you are a hardcore NBA fan, a blogger, a professional writer, or a basketball player, when folks interested in the league find out about your passion, they often try to connect with you about it. Which is great! Especially as sometimes you get cats like the one who was driving the Portland Trail Blazers star guard in the video below.

Now, I have to warn you about some NSFW language, but what the guy had to say was pretty great. Hilarious, even.

The topics ranged from superstars being on the same team, to hating the Golden State Warriors, to the future success of the Blazers themselves.

Again, some extremely NSFW language ahead but also some serious laughs to be had.

Via Instagram:

CJ McCollum's drive to the airport was something. 😂 (via @3jmccollum)

A post shared by Sports Videos (@houseofhighlights) on

I’m dying. This guy is the best.

Watch Stephen Curry’s best play from every game last year (VIDEO)

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It was probably damn near impossible to put together at this video.

Stephen Curry, the Golden State Warriors star point guard/human highlight machine, produces enough good content on a given night for multiple highlight videos. Going through and selecting just the best play from each game must have been a difficult challenge.

But here we are.

The NBA published a video to their YouTube channel this week of the single best play from each game of Curry’s 2016-17 season. The result is a 20-minute video that is well worth the watch.

Summer can seem to drag on, but seeing back-to-back plays like this just makes you thirsty for the winter.

James Harden on recruiting Chris Paul from LA: “He didn’t seem happy”

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One of the most interesting storylines of the first month of this upcoming NBA season will be the Houston Rockets.

The team has paired MVP candidate James Harden with one of the greatest point guards of all time in Chris Paul, but it remains to be seen whether the two will be able to work together with the kind of efficiency that Mike D’Antoni’s team had in 2016-17.

Harden has been the subject of some chatter already this offseason after a photo of him surfaced on Instagram. In it, Harden looked to have added a significant portion of muscle this summer, which may help him as he moves back to a more off-ball style of play with Paul in the fold.

Harden was also the subject of significant scrutiny at the end of last season, where he failed in the playoffs in spectacular fashion against the San Antonio Spurs.

In a recent interview with Sam Amick of USA Today, Harden said his newfound weight gain has been part of his plan to combat late-season fatigue. Harden has also introduced yoga and pilates into his workout routine.

Perhaps more interesting information from Harden’s interview with Amick revealed just how much impact he had recruiting Chris Paul in the trade from Los Angeles Clippers, and Paul’s attitude at the end of the season toward his former team.

Via USA Today:

Harden, who signed a four-year extension this summer and will earn a combined $228 million by the end of the 2022-23 season, had everything to do with the move.

“I just knew that in the summertime obviously (Paul) was a free agent, and I wanted to see where his head was,” Harden said of Paul, who will now be a free agent next summer. “He didn’t seem happy, so after that we just took it from there.

“Obviously Golden State has been in the Finals and won two out of three, so that’s what everybody is trying to build up against. But we’re right there. We’re right there. Obviously, we have a lot of work to do, but it definitely puts us in a better chance.”

It certainly makes sense that after years of perpetual playoff failure by the Clippers that Paul would want to move on. Harden and CP3 seem to enjoy each other at the moment, and a pairing does seem to make sense on paper. We will see how that plays out over the course of next season.