Former UW guard Isaiah Thomas gains fans at Marriott Center

Published: Thursday, Sept. 22 2011 11:48 p.m. MDT

While it was clearly Jimmer Fredette's event Thursday night at the Marriott Center, former Washington guard Isaiah Thomas quickly became a fan favorite.

Thomas, who played on the team opposite of Fredette during the Jimmer's All-Stars exhibition game, drew plenty of cheers for his colorful play and charismatic personality.

"I had never been out here before," said Thomas, who scored 19 points and grabbed eight assists. "But after that, I need to make a few more trips here."

Why was he so popular with the fans?

"Maybe because I'm small, the smallest guy out here," said the 5-foot-9 point guard. "I don't know. The fans were so great … It was weird. They loved me and I love them. The crowd was unbelievable. That's all I can say."

Thomas' dunk in the second half endeared him even more to the fans.

"I don't know the last time I touched the rim," he said. "Today was a good day."

Thomas was drafted in the second round by the Sacramento Kings, the same team that selected Fredette in the first round.

While they will be future NBA teammates, Thomas relished the chance to guard Fredette on Thursday.

"You see Jimmer on SportsCenter every night, shooting long threes and you don't really know how far he can shoot it until he shoots one in your face," Thomas said. "He's a great player. I thank him so much for inviting me to come out to this event."

—Jeff Call

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