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Isaiah Thomas feels good physically, but frustrated he can't help Cavs yet

Gregory Shamus / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Isaiah Thomas' return to action can't come soon enough.

The All-Star point guard was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers during the offseason, but has yet to suit up for his new team due to a hip injury. Having had front-row seats to Cleveland's surprisingly slow start, Thomas sees how he can make the team better, but isn't able to do so just yet.

"It's been frustrating because I know where I can help at," he told Cleveland.com's Joe Vardon. "Not just scoring and making plays, but, being that leader, being that voice out there and holding everybody accountable. Not saying that guys aren't doing that but I know where I can help at, in so many ways other than just scoring the basketball. And I think I could really put pressure on the defense.

"We don't have nobody really who's been able to get in the paint and make a play and keep the defense on their heels and get to the foul line and things like that, so I think there's so many areas that I can help in ... I hope I'll be out there real soon."

The question remains: how soon? The Cavaliers originally targeted Jan. 1 for the diminutive floor general's return, but he appears to be ahead of schedule.

"I feel good, man," he said. "Every week I'm getting better and better and I'm able to do more and more, and it's getting there."

The 28-year-old has been recovering from a right femoral-acetabular impingement with a labral tear he suffered late last season. He last took to the court on May 19, when he faced the Cavs as a member of the Boston Celtics in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference finals.

While Thomas may be antsy and the 5-7 Cavs could certainly use him, they won't rush him back, as they're more concerned with having him healthy and available over the course of the campaign - especially during the postseason, when they'll look to make their fourth consecutive run to the NBA Finals.

IT is coming off a career year in which he posted 28.9 points, 5.9 assists, and 2.7 rebounds and led Boston to a first-place finish in the East.

Whenever he returns, he said he'll be able to "adjust quicker than somebody else could" given his age, experience, and knowledge of the game.

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