When you think of the Bad Boys during the late 80s and early 90s, you can’t forget to mention Isiah Thomas. Thomas played point guard for those Detroit Pistons’ teams that won two titles.
Thomas enjoyed a successful career in the NBA, and when his playing career was over, he found an interest in something outside of basketball.
Isiah Thomas’ NBA career
Thomas spent 13 seasons in the league, spending his entire career with the Pistons. The Pistons selected Thomas with the No.2 pick in the 1981 NBA draft. When he first joined the team, they were struggling. But that would change. In an era playing against a loaded Boston Celtics team, the Eastern Conference was a tough one. Thomas fit that team perfectly. At the point guard, he knew how to control the game.
He knew how to score, especially when his team needed a basket. In 1988, the Pistons made it to their first NBA Finals in 32 years and took on the Los Angeles Lakers. Thomas had one of the best performances in NBA Finals history. In Game 6, Thomas severely sprained his ankle late in the game. But that did not prevent him from getting off that court. Playing basically on one leg, Thomas scored 25 points in the third quarter, an NBA Finals record. The way he played through his injury showed how tough he was. The Lakers would end up winning that game and forcing a Game 7 in which they would take home the title.
In the next two seasons, the Pistons would find themselves back in the NBA Finals, and this time, they would come out victorious. They defeated the Lakers and Portland Trail Blazers to win back-to-back titles. He was named Finals MVP in 1990.
The point guard from Chicago played his final season in 1994. He finished averaging 19.2 points and 9.3 assists per game. Thomas made the all-star game 12 times in his career and was named to the All-NBA team five times. In 2000, he was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Isiah’s interest in champagne
After his playing career ended, Thomas tapped into his entrepreneurial skills. Instead of analyzing defenses on the court, he was analyzing champagne. In 2016, he became the owner and importer of Cheurlin and Cheurlin Thomas Champagnes. When he made this move, he became the only African American to own 100 percent of his company in a champagne business.
Thomas was making moves off the court. He loved wine and champagne, and what better way for him than to own what he loves to drink. Not only has Thomas won awards on the basketball court, but he has won awards for his champagne too. He won Champagne Producer of the Year in 2017 and 2018 at the New York International Wine Competition.
Smart move by Isiah
Isiah Thomas’ decision to tap into this industry was a smart business move. When Thomas and his partner ventured their champagne to the United States in 2016, they received a lot of good reviews. Champagne is a drink that a lot of people enjoy, especially if it’s good quality.
Thomas seems to have good knowledge of this business and has the right people in his corner, helping him out. There are so many opportunities out there for athletes once they retire or their playing career finishes and Thomas took advantage of that.