Celtics fall short a day after Isaiah Thomas’ sister dies

(Photo from @celtics/ Twitter) Isaiah Thomas goes up for a lay up against the Chicago Bulls in Game One of the NBA Playoffs on April 16.
(Photo from @celtics/ Twitter) Isaiah Thomas goes up for a layup against the Chicago Bulls in Game One of the NBA Playoffs on April 16.

Just not quite enough. A day after Boston Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas’ 22-year-old sister Chyna died in a one-car accident, the Celtics lost to the Chicago Bulls 106-102. Thomas led all scorers with 33 points and also contributed six assists and five rebounds.

“It’s a difficult time for Isaiah and his family, and for us as well,” Boston Celtics forward Al Horford said after the loss. “We wanted to come out and be able to win this game, but there are bigger things than just basketball…We’re not going to make excuses, but this was hard. This was difficult. I felt like we really dealt with it the right way, but Isaiah’s the one I felt dealt with it best.”

On April 15, Washington state officials pronounced Chyna J. Thomas dead after locating her vehicle on Interstate 5 in Federal Way, Washington. Authorities said the accident occurred around 5 a.m.

“All of a sudden it started to drift very casually onto the left shoulder,” State Patrol spokesman Trooper Nick King said, according to the Tacoma News Tribune.

The car reportedly then drifted 50 feet until it hit a large road sign.

An hour before tipoff, Isaiah Thomas was seen crying on the team’s bench during the pre-game shootaround, consoled by Celtics guard Avery Bradley. A moment of silence was also held for Chyna Thomas during the pregame introductions.

Forward Jimmy Butler led the Bulls in the winning effort with 30 points, nine rebounds, and three assists. The win was the first time the No. 8 seed defeated the No. 1 seed in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference playoffs since the Atlanta Hawks defeated the Indiana Pacers in 2014. Butler saluted Isaiah Thomas’ performance after the game.

“That’s always tough to go through. I wish him the best, him and his family, but it just shows the type of player, the type of man he is. To go out there and battle through what he was going through for his organization and his team,” Butler said.

Game 2 of the series tips off April 18 at 8 p.m. There has been no official word on whether Isaiah Thomas will play.

Rashad Milligan
Rashad Milligan

Rashad Milligan is the sports editor at the Valley Times-News in Lanett, Alabama. He was once a news reporter at the Douglas County Sentinel and the sports editor for Georgia State's student newspaper, The Signal.



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