“I’m definitely planning on being back next year,” Thomas, a Paterson, N.J. native who spent one year at Villanova, said Wednesday by phone.
“The situation is that my wife [Tricia] has a few things that she has to take care of. Just the timing was bad. I don’t want people to think she’s on her deathbed or anything like that. She had some things to take care of and she just wanted me to be home [in Los Angeles] when she had to go through them.”
Thomas missed most of last season, playing just 18 games in his first season with Dallas. He was sidelined at first by knee surgery and then left the team in late January to deal with Tricia’s situation.
A 13-year NBA veteran, Thomas has averaged 11.5 points and 4.1 rebounds in his career. He averaged 7.5 points and 2.3 rebounds in 18 games last year with Dallas.
Thomas said he planned to remain involved in basketball this season, from coaching his daughter Kiarra’s team to helping a friend in the D-League to making appearances at Villanova and Seton Hall.
“Oh yeah, definitely,” he said. “This year I’ll probably help out with my daughter’s high school team.”
Shaquille Thomas, Tim’s nephew, is also a senior at Newark NIA Prep and recently committed to Cincinnati for 2011, making his announcement exclusively on SNY.tv.
A three-time former Knick, Thomas is also close friends with Darvin Ham, now the coach of the New Mexico Thunderbirds of the D-League, who are affiliated with the Orlando Magic and New Orleans Hornets.
“He wants me to come out and help,” Thomas said.
Thomas also plans to drop by Villanova and also help out Seton Hall assistant Shaheen Holloway with the Pirates’ big men.
“I’m definitely going to be around,” he said. “I’m going to go to Villanova and help out there a little bit. My boy Shaheen wants me to come help out with some of the bigs.
“I have enough other projects. I’m going to be busy. I’m going to stay in shape and get back next year.”