Koby Altman, Cavaliers offer no timetable for Isaiah Thomas' return

Anyone looking for more information on Isaiah Thomas' hip during his introductory press conference with the Cleveland Cavaliers came to the wrong place on Thursday.

Since the Kyrie Irving-Isaiah Thomas trade first fell into limbo a couple weeks ago, Thomas' hip injury has been at the forefront of the NBA, yet another twist in a summer filled with them.

The injury, of course, didn't derail the trade but did force the Boston Celtics to throw in additional compensation, fueling speculation that Thomas was more significantly injured than previously let on.

Therefore, the first questions in Thomas, Jae Crowder and Ante Zizic's press conference on Thursday were directed towards Thomas, rightfully focusing on his high-profile labrum tear.

Those questions were cut off by new Cavaliers GM Koby Altman, who was quick to say there would be no timetable put on Thomas' injury.

"Obviously, it's been sort of well-documented, the hip injury for the last week and a half. To be fair to Isaiah, we're not going to address any of the specifics of his injury. We're also not going to put a timetable on his return."

"We're not going to rush it at all."

After a question to Isaiah about what he's able to do right now, he was asked again about the labrum injury.

Altman jumped right in as Thomas simply flashed a smile.

"So again, I don't want this to be the Isaiah Thomas hip press conference. So I'm going to, with all due respect, shut down the hip questions. If we want to talk about Isaiah, let's talk about Isaiah the All-Star. Let's talk about Isaiah, the guy that averaged 29 points a game last year. Let's talk about him as a leader and what he's going to bring to this franchise in terms of performance on the floor when we get him back."

Of course, this answer was followed with another hip-related question, asking what the Cavaliers planned to do in the interim with Isaiah out. Altman mentioned the Cavs' signings of Derrick Rose and Jose Calderon. That should provide little comfort for Cavs fans considering those two players' respective outputs in 2016-17 compared to Thomas/Irving.

So at the end of the day, we know no more about Isaiah's hip injury or his potential return than we did. Altman, despite his efforts, failed to throw cold water on the speculation, which will surely continue to run rampant. The Cavaliers created this mess for themselves with their public standoff with the Celtics and their acquisition of a player with a pre-existing injury, and none of this will go away until Thomas actually returns to the court.

Isaiah, through all of this, was himself, wearing a large smirk (as you can see up top) as the hip questions rained in about his injury. No stranger to doubters, this will surely add motivation for a player who does his best work with a chip on his shoulder. He's said his goodbye to Boston and now he's seems ready for the next step.

But the question still remains: When will Thomas first play for the Cavaliers?

Photo: Jason Miller/Getty (Top), Screenshot from Youtube (Bottom)

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