Isaiah Thomas says win over Cavaliers didn’t have special meaning

Isaiah Thomas insisted it wasn’t a revenge game.

“I don’t need to show anybody, they know what I can do,” Thomas said. “I only played 15 games for them, so it’s really not about showing them what I can do, the world knows what I can do and what I bring to the table.

“I took it as another game and I just wanted to win and we did a helluva job as a team beating that really good team over there.”

Thomas was an integral part of the Lakers’ 127-113 win on Sunday over the Cleveland Cavaliers, the team that traded for him in August, then traded him away in February. He scored 20 points with nine assists and a rating of plus-18.


“He was great tonight,” Lakers coach Luke Walton said. “He always plays with an edge. I think that’s just being the last pick in the draft and everything else that he’s gone through in his career. I think that’s how he naturally plays.”

Thomas had a tumultuous and short stay with the Cavaliers after starring in Boston. As he recovered from the torn labrum in his hip, he didn’t get on the court for much of his time there. When he did, he never looked comfortable.

That has appeared to change in Los Angeles. And while Thomas might be in a better situation now, he didn’t use Sunday to make that point.

“I have really close friends on that team, and those guys are great guys,” Thomas said. “They just made a business decision, and I’m trying to move on for the most part.”

Clarkson and Nance come home

When Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. arrived at Staples Center on Sunday night, they stopped by the Lakers’ locker room. Not out of habit, just to say hello.

“Uninvited,” Walton quipped.

Nance and Clarkson were, for the first time in their careers, playing against the Lakers, the team with which both started their careers. Nance spent 21/2 seasons with the Lakers after being drafted late in the first round in 2015. Clarkson came to the Lakers on a draft-day trade in 2014.

Both players had been playing exceptionally well in the weeks before the Lakers sent them to Cleveland.

“It was a good feeling coming back,” Clarkson said. “They showed support, that was cool.”

Said Nance: “Weird being a visitor on that court.”

Clarkson said playing with LeBron James has “been awesome.” For Nance it’s a chance to play with a player he idolized growing up. Nance grew up near Akron, Ohio, James’ hometown.

“It’s really cool getting to go back home and play with a contending team,” Nance said. “I’m just really enjoying it.”

Ingram still out

Brandon Ingram was evaluated by the Lakers doctors on Sunday for a groin strain he suffered on March 1 in Miami.

Ingram will not play during the Lakers’ back-to-back games this week. The Lakers play the Denver Nuggets at home on Tuesday and the Golden State Warriors on the road.

He will be evaluated again Thursday.

Follow Tania Ganguli on Twitter @taniaganguli