The 25 Greatest Players of the NBA's Golden Era

6. Isiah Thomas

Accomplishments: 12-time All-Star, Two-time NBA Champion, Three-time First Team All-NBA
Team(s): Detroit Pistons
Career Stats: 19.2 PPG, 3.6 RPG, 9.3 APG, 1.9 SPG, 0.3 BPG
Years Played: 1981-1994

Thomas was the undisputed leader of the "Bad Boy" Pistons, as tenacious and fearless a point guard as the league has seen. His aggressive playing style set the tone for Detroit, and behind Thomas they won back-to-back NBA championships in 1988-89 and 1989-90 before being eclipsed by the rapidly rising Bulls. Thomas' ability to facilitate was perhaps his best quality, and "Zeke" finished his career with an average of 9.3 assists per game to go along with a strong 19.2 points per game mark. He also was a menace on the defensive end, averaging 1.9 steals per game on his career and finishing ranked ninth on the all-time list. The crowning achievement of his career is undoubtedly Game 6 of the 1987-88 Finals, where with his team leading in the series three games to two and playing on a severely sprained ankle Thomas scored 25 points in the fourth quarter to try to deliver a title to Detroit. While they ultimately fell short, his sacrifice and grit will always be remembered.

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