Isaiah Thomas stares down Phoenix Suns’ bench after 4-point play

Isaiah Thomas scored 21 points in his second game with the Boston Celtics.

Mark J. Rebilas/Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

High school reunions happen five, maybe 10 years after graduation. They give you time to shake off your high school experience and actually reflect on what happened during those four years of brutality (or four years of greatness if you’re one of the lucky ones who hit his peak during high school). 

For new Boston Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas, that reflection was fresh on his mind Monday.

Only four days after being traded, Thomas got to face off against his former team, the Phoenix Suns, for whom he played for only half a season. Thomas finished the game with 21 points on 16 shots — his second straight 20-point performance to begin his Celtics career — but none of those points was sweeter than these three.

Let’s set the scene. Under two minutes to go, Isaiah’s got the ball early in the shot clock (not that he ever cares about how much time is left on the shot clock), Celtics up one. Cue the magic:

Even more perfect: The foul came on Brandon Knight, the good-but-not-great point guard Phoenix brought in to make up for the joint absence of Thomas and Goran Dragic, whom the Suns traded to the Miami Heat last Thursday in a separate deal. The Celtics eventually won the game 115-110.

The smallest player in the NBA (debatable whether he or Nate Robinson is tinier) has to be one of the most competitive. That’s just how the world works. Thomas says the staredown came from a good place (h/t to Deadspin) and that he was happy in Phoenix. That may be true, but c’mon Isaiah, that look was tunneled in. You got caught up in the moment and wanted to (deservingly) show off that scrunched-up mug. Don’t try to tell me it was lighthearted. Don’t even begin.