isaiah thomas dealt with the worst loss of his life on Saturday, then took the court for a much more trivial defeat on Sunday. Sure, the Boston Celtics were upset by the Chicago Bulls in the first game of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinals series, but it likely didn't matter much in the moment to their star point guard, who found out after Saturday's practice that his sister had died in a car accident, yet still chose to take the floor on Sunday.

Incredible strength

An outpouring of love across the NBA and sports world came Thomas' way after news of Chyna Thomas' death broke.

Coaches, players, and fans all stood solidly behind him, and Boston Celtics coach Brad Stevens told him to take as much time away from the game as needed, even as the playoffs were set to begin. Perhaps Thomas felt he would feel most comfortable with the familiarity of the court, though, so he decided to play in Sunday afternoon's series opener.

Prior to the start of the game, the TD Garden crowd held a moment of silence for the tragic loss of life. Thomas wore shoes with messages inscribed to his sister and was clearly in an emotional mood, supposedly battling with his decision up until the player introductions. When he scored his first basket of the game and went to hug Celtics teammate Avery Bradley, the emotion of the moment was palpable for all in attendance.

Thomas went on to perform at his usual level of excellence, which will earn him some votes in a loaded MVP vote this year. He scored 33 points, six assists, and five rebounds on the afternoon.

It wasn't enough for the victory, as the Bulls proved victorious by a score of 106-102. It was clear that many of the Celtics' players minds were elsewhere, though, as could be expected when the game of basketball pales in comparison to the preciousness of life.

Moving forward with a heavy heart

It's unclear what will happen next for the point guard.

The Celtics play the Bulls again on Tuesday night - the NBA playoffs are unrelenting. Thomas didn't speak to the media after the game, but there will surely be a funeral happening for his sister early in the week, which he would have to fly back to Seattle to attend if he so chooses. Nobody on the team will begrudge him for doing so, and they shouldn't. Playing basketball may be trivial for Isaiah Thomas in the moment, but if he wants to, his next opportunity will come in just two days, where his teammates and fans will welcome him with warm hearts once more.