31 January 2016

Malcolm Thomas' Colorful Professional Career

Malcolm Thomas' Career
Malcolm Thomas was born on 8 November 1988. He played at Pepperdine University in his freshmen year before joining the San Diego City College. He ended his two-year career with the Aztecs as the school’s second leading all-time shot blocker and ranked eighth all-time in both rebound average and field goal percentage.

Thomas went undrafted in the 2011 NBA Draft. During the NBA lockout that summer, he signed a US$ 350,000 contract to play a season for Mobis Phoebus in the Korean Basketball League. His potential was realized early when one considers that most overseas rookies made about US$ 100,000–US $150,000 only.

The team released him in November 2011, despite his averaging 21 points, 11 rebounds, three blocks, and three assists. They wanted a more veteran player, but agreed to pay the remainder of Thomas' salary.

Thomas was signed by the Los Angeles Lakers on December 2011. On December 17, he was assigned to the Los Angeles D-Fenders by the Lakers, and was recalled the next day. After he was waived, the 27-year old signed with the D-Fenders for the 2011-2012 season.

On January 2012, Thomas was then signed by the San Antonio Spurs, where he was reunited with former Aztec teammate Kawhi Leonard. He played in his first NBA game on January 13 against the Portland Trail Blazers, getting one rebound in two minutes of garbage time.

The 6-foot-9 forward was later assigned to the Austin Toros before he was waived by the Spurs. Thomas later joined the D-Fenders again on February 2012.

Later that season, he signed with the Houston Rockets, who assigned him to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers. He then rejoined the D-Fenders, with whom he played in the D-League finals.

On October 2012, Thomas signed a one-year contract with Euroleague giant Maccabi Tel Aviv of Israel where he averaged 7.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks. During the Euroleague competition, Thomas had a double-double of 14 points and 11 rebounds in 26 minutes in a 70–68 victory over Italian Montepaschi Siena in mid-October.

However, after Tel Aviv signed 6-foot-11 Croatian Darko Planinić, Thomas minutes decreased until he was waived by Maccabi Tel Aviv in February 2013.

The following month, Thomas rejoined the Los Angeles D-Fenders for another tour of duty. On that same period, he was called up from the D-League and signed a 10-day contract with the Golden State Warriors and was assigned to the Santa Cruz Warriors of the NBA D-League.

On 19 March 2013, Thomas signed a 10-day contract with the Chicago Bulls. He signed a second 10-day contract later that month and signed for the remainder of the season on April 2013 before he waived on July of the same year.

In November 2013, Thomas was reacquired by the Los Angeles D-Fenders. and then the following month Thomas signed with the San Antonio Spurs. He was assigned multiple time to the Austin Toros. He was later was claimed off waivers by the Utah Jazz where he got the distinction and named to the Futures All-Star roster for the 2014 NBA D-League All-Star Game.

Utah decided to trade Thomas, along with John Lucas III and Erik Murphy, to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for Carrick Felix, a 2015 second round draft pick, and cash considerations.

On 25 September 2013, he was traded, along with John Lucas III, Erik Murphy, Dwight Powell, and the Cavaliers' 2016 and 2017 second-round picks, to the Boston Celtics in exchange for Keith Bogans and two future second-round picks. Four days later, he was waived by the Celtics.

On 27 October 2014, Thomas signed with the Philadelphia 76ers and was waived the following month. The 76ers management found out that Thomas had been playing with fluid and loose cartilage in his left knee.

Before the year ends, Thomas re-signed with the 76ers. After he was waived, he signed with the Piratas de Quebradillas of Puerto Rico.

On 31 October 2015, Thomas was re-acquired by the Los Angeles D-Fenders, returning to the franchise for a fourth stint and this is where coach Norman Black found and signed him to play for the Meralco Bolts.

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