In a heartfelt farewell to Boston on the Players' Tribune website, Isaiah Thomas writes about getting the news of the trade, how "it still hurts" and how he "wanted to be the Celtics version of Brady and Ortiz."
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Thomas writes that "I don't think the Boston Celtics got better by making this trade."
Here's the full excerpt:
But yeah, I’ll just say it: That s*** hurt. It hurt a lot.
And I won’t lie — it still hurts.
It’s not that I don’t understand it. Of course I get it: This is a business. Danny is a businessman, and he made a business move. I don’t agree with it, just personally, and I don’t think the Boston Celtics got better by making this trade. But that’s not my job. That’s Danny’s. And it’s a tough job, and he’s been really good at it. But at the end of the day, these deals just come down to one thing: business. So it’s no hard feelings on that end. I’m a grown man, and I know what I got into when I joined this league — and so far it’s been more blessings than curses. I’m not sitting here, writing this, because I feel I was wronged. I wasn’t wronged. It was Boston’s right to trade me.
Thomas also writes about how he wanted to go down in history as a Boston sports legend alongside the likes of Tom Brady and David Ortiz. He wrote that Brady's was among the many texts he received after the trade:
To be getting a personal message like that from someone like Tom, who is such a Boston sports legend … I mean, it was bittersweet.
At first, honestly, it stung a little. I look at a career like Tom’s with the Patriots — and that’s exactly the kind of career that I had hoped to be building here with the Celtics: Being this low draft pick … coming in without acclaim … and then — through hard work, and determination, and some talent that maybe people had overlooked — just starting to win, and win, and win. And then establishing a legacy of winning. And then staying in Boston, winning titles and competing like hell, for the rest of my career — until I was considered one of the all-time Boston greats. That’s the career that I had started to map out for myself. In my mind, I wanted to be the Celtics version of Brady and Ortiz. I wanted this next era of Celtics basketball to go down in history — and I wanted to go down in Boston sports history with it. So when I got that text from Tom, you know, there was part of me that felt a little down.