Isaiah Thomas will wear No. 24 for the New Orleans Pelicans in a nod to Kobe Bryant.
The Pelicans officially signed the point guard to a 10-day contract on Saturday. Thomas replied to the team tweet detailing his jersey selection saying, “Kobe !!!!”
He began his career wearing number 22 with the Sacramento Kings and has also worn numbers 3, 4, 7 and 0 at other times in his career.
Thomas will be available to the Pelicans starting Sunday’s game in Houston. And it could be needed immediately.
The Pelicans are battling injuries right now with five players on the injury report. Zion Williamson (right thumb strain), Brandon Ingram (right first MTP irritation), and Lonzo Ball (right hip flexor strain) are listed as questionable. Williamson and Ingram have missed two games in a row, while Ball has missed seven in a row.
Pelicans guard Josh Hart (torn UCL in right thumb) is expected to miss significant time due to his injury, and reserve point guard Kira Lewis, a rookie who had a career-high 21 points in the game of the Friday against Atlanta, he has right calf doubts.
Thomas has not played an NBA game since February 3, 2020 with the Washington Wizards. He played two games for Team USA in February, leading the team in scoring in FIBA qualifying wins over the Bahamas and Mexico while shooting 50% from deep (6 of 12).
During the 2019-20 season, Thomas averaged 12.2 points and 3.7 assists in 40 games with the Wizards.
Thomas, 32, is a two-time All-Star and was selected to the All-NBA second team in 2017 after averaging 28.9 points per game for the Boston Celtics and helping them become the first seed in the Eastern Conference. But a hip injury Thomas suffered that season has held him back ever since.