Cavs' rehab plan for Isaiah Thomas does not include surgery

INDEPENDENCE, Ohio (AP) Isaiah Thomas won't start the season playing for the Cavaliers, and the All-Star point guard's return to the floor remains mysterious.

Acquired last week in a blockbuster trade with Boston, Thomas did not address any specific questions on Thursday about a serious hip injury that prematurely ended his inspirational playoff run last season in the Eastern Conference finals.

Dressed smartly in a wine-colored sport coat for his introductory news conference, Thomas immediately deferred to Cavs general manager Koby Altman when asked about his hip and a timetable for his return.

''We're not going to rush it at all,'' said Altman, who soon grew weary of follow-up questions about Thomas' condition.

''The goal is to bring him back at some point this year and be healthy and compete and get back to IT status. That's our goal and our responsibility to him. We're not going to comment on the injury and we're not going to comment on a timetable.''

While Altman wouldn't be pinned down on when Thomas might play for the Cavs, coach Tyronn Lue said, ''Isaiah's not going to be starting the season.''

Thomas was acquired last week along with forward Jae Crowder, center Ante Zizic and a first-round draft pick in 2018 from Boston for star guard Kyrie Irving.

Altman said the Cavs' rehab plan does not include surgery for Thomas, who perked up at the comment.

''Ya'll hear that?'' Thomas said to a room at the team's facility packed with media members. ''Everybody wants to be doctors now.''

Thomas fought through pain in his hip and the tragic death of his sister last postseason, pushing himself and the Celtics as far as they could go before they were eliminated by the Cavs.

The 5-foot-8 guard's injury held up the trade from being completed as the Cavs had concerns about Thomas' health.

Thomas said he's been receiving treatment and working out in the weight room.

''We have a plan and we're just going to attack that plan and get me back to 100 percent as soon as possible,'' he said.

---

More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketball

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide — from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Grant Wahl, Andy Staples and more — delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.