Boston Celtics point guard Isaiah Thomas will make his first appearance at an All-Star game on Sunday, completing his rise to the top against the odds.
Having been selected by the Sacramento Kings with the final pick of the 2011 draft, it has been a long road for the 27-year-old.
Standing at 5ft 9in, Thomas faces challenges every day in the land of the giants but, since joining the Boston Celtics, his stock has risen dramatically.
Having spent three years in Sacramento and a season with the Phoenix Suns, the backcourt star has found a new lease of life under Brad Stevens at TD Garden.
Averaging a career-high 21.5 points and 6.6 assists per game, Thomas was chosen as an Eastern Conference reserve after leading the Celtics to a strong first half of the season in the East.
Ahead of the annual showpiece at the Air Canada Center, the Washington native revealed some advice fellow - more experienced - All-Stars had given him and admits it is nice to have other guys admiring his good work.
He said: "They all just said to enjoy it, there is going to be a lot going on, but it is special and you deserve it. It is crazy to hear that from the guys that I grew up watching.
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"It is weird just being around them and conversating with them because you compete against them all season long. It is nice to see the guys truly admire what you do."
Thomas will be hoping his first time at an All-Star weekend will not be his last. But since his days at Washington University, he has never doubted he would make it to this level: "I could [see myself becoming an All-Star], but I don't think anybody else could, and that is the honest answer."