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Average NBA G-League salary revealed after Isaiah Thomas drops 42 points on debut

Joshua Rogers December 16, 2021
Average NBA G-League salary revealed after Isaiah Thomas drops 42 points on debut
Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Isaiah Thomas has had a difficult year after last playing in the NBA for the New Orleans Pelicans in April 2021. On Wednesday 15 December, Thomas made his G-League debut, scoring 42 points. Fans wanted to know what the average G-League salary is for players, given how much Isaiah made during his career.

Former NBA All-Star Isaiah Thomas last played in an NBA game in April 2021, but he hasn’t given up hope of making it back to the league in the near future.

On Wednesday night, the former Boston Celtic suited up for the Grand Rapids Gold – the Denver Nuggets’ affiliate – for his G-League debut.

The 32-year-old guard exploded for 42 points, eight assists and six rebounds, and shot 16-of-30 with five 3-pointers. Gold lost 131-127 to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, but Thomas proved he is still an elite scorer.

What is the average NBA G-League salary?

After his debut, fans were curious about what the average G-League salary is. Players in the G-League do not sign contracts with the individual teams but rather with the league, and there are a variety of different contracts.

However, according to Just Love Basketball, the average G-League salary is $35,000, although there is the potential for this to be much more. For example, the highest-paid player in the G-League this season is Sharife Cooper, who is reportedly making $462,629.

Last season, Jalen Green was the highest paid player in the G-League with $500,000. Whatever Isaiah Thomas is making in the G-League, it’s likely to be much less than his NBA salary. Thomas’ last deal was a 10-day contract with the New Orleans Pelicans in 2021 which earned him $317,814.

Thomas’ biggest contract in the NBA was a four-year, $27 million contract with the Celtics, although Thomas missed out on a max deal during free agency in 2017 after being traded to the Cavaliers.

Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images

What happened to Isaiah Thomas and where does he go from here?

Thomas last played in the NBA for the New Orleans Pelicans, but only played three games with the franchise. He averaged 7.7 points and scored in double figures in two of those games but was released.

Isaiah enjoyed his best form with the Boston Celtics, where he was an All-Star in 2016-2017. In 2017, he finished fifth in MVP voting and averaged 29 points. However, he then suffered a knee injury against the Minnesota Timberwolves which actually turned out to be an undiagnosed hip injury which continued to plague Thomas.

Since last playing for the Pelicans, Thomas has played in various Pro-Am basketball leagues (he dropped 81 points in one game), and most recently joined the USA Basketball secondary team in the World Cup Qualifiers. He averaged 21 points across two games, including a game-winning 3-pointer over Cuba.

Thomas recently told The Athletic’s Shams Charania that he’d worked out with the Los Angeles Lakers this past off-season. He even said he came close to making a roster spot before the franchise ultimately decided to sign Rajon Rondo.

“I was very close,” Thomas said. “I really believe if the Rondo buyout didn’t happen, I would have been a Laker.”

Thomas clearly hasn’t given up hope of making it back to the NBA one day. He recently signed for the Grand Rapids Gold to play in the upcoming G-League Showcase which takes place from December 19-22 in Las Vegas. Let’s hope he can continue to show what he’s made of.

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Joshua is a senior sports writer with over four years' experience in online writing. He graduated with a BA in Ancient History from The University of Manchester before receiving an MA in Sports Journalism from The University of Central Lancashire. He became a trending writer for a leading social publisher and later spent time covering the 2018 World Cup for The Mirror Online. He then moved to a social marketing agency where he acted as website editor. His specialties on The Focus include F1, tennis, NBA, NFL and combat sports.