With the summer's biggest blockbuster trade officially completed last week, the Cleveland Cavaliers finally introduced All-Star point guard Isaiah Thomas at a press conference on Thursday.
Thomas was joined on the podium by Jae Crowder and Ante Zizic, who the Boston Celtics gave up to acquire Kyrie Irving from the Cavs.
The C's also included the Brooklyn Nets' 2018 unprotected first-round pick and a 2020 second-round pick, via the Miami Heat, in the deal.
After remaining quiet following the trade, IT finally opened up this week in a special post on The Players' Tribune prior to his press conference in Cleveland.
The 28-year-old described how he was "hurt" by the Celtics' decision to trade him but he realises that he's been given a great opportunity to win a championship in Ohio and that is his only mindset going into next season.
Thomas delivered a clear message for Cleveland's rivals and their fans and wants it to make headline news.
"I’mma just say this here, point-blank, to get it over with — and then you can go ahead and post it on whatever bulletin boards you want to: You are not going to want to mess with the Cavs this year. This is going to be a great year to be a Cavs fan, a great year. And I’m excited," he said.
Isaiah is clearly brimming with optimism about the team's chances, but it'll largely depend on his health.
As has been well documented, the point guard is currently suffering from a hip injury that could reportedly keep him out until the All-Star break.
There have been doubts raised about how he'll bounce back from the injury but he assured fans that he'll make a full recovery and return to the player he was last season.
The All-NBA guard averaged a career-high 28.9 points with the Celtics last year and shot an impressive 46.3 percent from the field.
He managed to put up those numbers whilst regularly commanding double and triple teams as Boston's best scorer.
Playing with the Cavaliers should see him enjoy more space to operate alongside the likes of LeBron James and Kevin Love and it's something he's already relishing.
"If you’ve watched any Celtics games last year, then you know how many times I would have to go through double and even triple teams, just to get my shot off," he said.
"It ended up working fine for us — guys played great, and my shot was falling. But this year … man, it’s not even going to be a thing. You really going to throw three guys on me, when I’m sharing a court with the best basketball player on the planet? Nah, I don’t think so."
Unfortunately, Thomas will not the fit for the season opener between the Celtics and Cavs on October 17, but it's still likely to be an entertaining encounter as this rivalry builds.News Now - Sport News