Michael Malone says Isaiah Thomas will lead league in minutes

Dec 15, 2013; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings point guard Isaiah Thomas (22) passes the ball to center DeMarcus Cousins (15) against the Houston Rockets during the third quarter at Sleep Train Arena. The Sacramento Kings defeated the Houston Rockets 106-91. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

No more than a few days ago, Isaiah Thomas was coming off the bench.

Now he’s pressed to be among the league leaders in minutes played, at least according to head coach Michael Malone who said the Kings pint-sized point will lead the NBA in minutes at season end:

“I want to have DeMarcus Cousins or Rudy Gay on the floor at all times,” said Kings coach Michael Malone. “I don’t think that we can afford to have both of them on the bench at the same time. Those are our two main go-to guys and Isaiah Thomas is going to be leading the league in minutes played after this season.”

The comment may have been slightly in jest – a suggestion that Thomas is simply going to be playing a lot, but considering the former Washington Huskie has played 84 of a possible 96 minutes in the past two games, it certainly has some merit.

The Kings are certainly going to need to figure out a backup plan for Thomas as Jimmer Fredette simply isn’t a traditional point guard and rookie Ray McCallum needs more experience to play rotational NBA minutes.

A backup could eventually emerge, either off the current roster (unlikely) or through a trade as the Kings continue to re-tool their roster, but regardless, we’ll be seeing an abundance of Thomas on the floor moving forward.

Topics: Isaiah Thomas, Sacramento Kings

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  • Krishnan1241

    Music to my ears! Finally we get the chance to see what IT can do with 35+ minutes a game. IMHO he is going to put his name right up there with the top point guards in the league!

  • Akaash Sharma

    Come on Kings what are you waiting for? Pick up Jamaal Tinsley before the Miami Heat or someone else does! He’s got the veteran experience to backup IT which is what we need to control gunners like Marcus Thornton off of our bench. He will provide leadership and be a voice on our team. I know he’s 35 and we like to run-and-gun but still give him a chance to come in and share his veteran knowledge with IT and the gang