Monday, May 8, 2017

Isaiah Thomas displays frustration with refs, says 'I can't be allowed to be held and grabbed'

The Washington Wizards celebrated their Game 4 victory over the Celtics at the Verizon Center on Sunday night, after they outscored Boston 42-20 in the third quarter, including a six-minute 26-0 run and held Isaiah Thomas to only two points in the second half.

The series, now knotted 2-2, heads back to Boston but not before Thomas voiced his displeasure with the lack of calls in favor of the Celtics in Game 4. The C's All-Star who was averaging at least 10 trips to the charity stripe through the first three games, didn't have one free throw attempt on Sunday.
“The [Wizards] were very physical,” Thomas told reporters. “The refs were allowing them to hold and grab and do all those things. I think especially, in that third quarter, I might have hit the ground five or six straight times. I’m not one that likes hitting the ground. So I think it’s gotta be called differently.
“Not saying that’s the reason that we lost,” Thomas continued. “They went on a 26-0 run, and we can’t have that on the road but I can’t allowed to be held and grabbed every pin-down, every screen and I don’t even shoot one free throw. I play the same way each and every night. So I think that has to change.”
Thomas started Game 4 shooting well, hitting 5-of-6 from behind the arc and scoring 17 of his 19 points in the first half after coming off a 13-point (3-of-8 shooting) performance in Game 3.
"We just have to corral him," said Wizards forward Markieff Morris. "Like, he's a small guy, so at the end of the day, if you got three players around you, how can you make a pass? How can you make a shot? It's just basically what we've been doing, and just trying to get the ball out of his hands. Hopefully, the other guys miss shots like they've been doing."
In the first two games of the series at the TD Garden, Thomas combined for 86 points, including a career-high 53-point performance in the Celtics Game 2 overtime win. Over the last two games in DC, Thomas has scored 32 total points on 10-for-22 shooting from the field to go along with eight combined turnovers.

Though Thomas has acknowledged that the Wizards have paid more attention to him defensively the last two games, he was able to pull up to hit the 3-ball with ease especially in Game 4, but has struggled when looking to finish at the rim.

Thomas, who finished fifth in the NBA in free-throw attempts during the regular season, will not stop being aggressive when it comes to attacking the hoop, whether a whistle is blown or not.
"No matter what, I've gotta play the same way," said Thomas. "So whether I'm getting the calls or not, I've gotta be in attack mode, I've gotta be aggressive to get in the paint, to make things happen, not just for myself but for my teammates.
"But I have to put it on the refs to call it. So I'm going to keep attacking and keep being myself no matter if they're calling it or not. But it does get a little frustrating when you continue to play the same way and there's nothing being called."
Check out Isaiah Thomas full presser after Game 4 below:

Joel Pavón

Photo used is courtesy of Getty Images

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