Gilbert Arenas Makes a Controversial Statement About Isiah Thomas

Isiah Thomas is an NBA legend. He led the Detroit Pistons to two consecutive titles in 1989 and 1990, and he was named the Finals’ Most Valuable Player in 1990. He is still regarded as one of the league’s elite players capable of creating scoring opportunities for his club.

But Gilbert Arenas doesn’t think highly of Isiah Thomas. In fact, on his show “Gil’s Arena,” he told his co-hosts that he thinks Thomas is not as good as people say he is.

Gilbert Arenas on Isiah Thomas

Isiah Thomas
Isiah Thomas

“Twelve-time All-Star, that means you’re a Top 24 player, right? You’re a five-time All-NBA player, meaning you wasn’t Top 15 but five times in the NBA…Fans vote for All-Stars; your play votes you as All-NBA,” Arenas said.

Arenas wanted to explain that even though Thomas was only excluded from the All-Star game once in his NBA career, being chosen for the All-Star team depends on votes from fans rather than actual performance on the court.

Arenas said that being named to the All-NBA team is a better measure of a player’s ability. The All-NBA team is chosen by NBA media based on individual performances during the season. But All-Star selections rely on fan votes and can be more about popularity than skill. Arenas believes that All-Star selections are not a reliable way to decide a player’s true abilities.

ESPN ranked Isiah 5th

Arenas is not the only one who thinks Isiah Thomas was not as good as people believe. In 2016, a group of experts from ESPN made a list of the greatest point guards in NBA history. They ranked Thomas as the fifth-best of all time, placing him behind Magic Johnson, Oscar Robertson, John Stockton, and Stephen Curry.

Magic Johnson, Dennis Rodman, Grant Hill, etc. disagreed with the ESPN list. They believed that Isiah Thomas should be ranked higher than Stephen Curry and possibly even ahead of John Stockton. However, Kevin Pelton from ESPN defended the decision to rank Thomas in fifth place. He even mentioned that advanced statistics indicate that Thomas might be overrated at that position.

According to ESPN, Stockton played more playoff games but did not win the championship. Curry won two MVP honors during the three-point era. Thomas, the NBA Finals’ shortest MVP, won during a period of dominant big men. Arenas believes Thomas is still overrated.

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