John Stockton was one of the greatest point guards of the 1990s. There is no doubt that he was a fantastic point guard who was an elite passer and had good fundamentals. It is quite possible that his all-time assists record will not be broken due to his longevity.
One of the people that John Stockton competed with and who was a fierce competitor was Detroit Pistons point guard Isiah Thomas. On a recent episode of Jason Whitlock's "Fearless" podcast, John Stockton detailed how Isiah Thomas went from a competitor to be one of his friends, and how Thomas eventually introduced him at his Hall of Fame induction. (12:50)
I admired him. He raised the level for me as a high school guy... I learned by watching him. He was in the league well before me, I got to watch that. How he competed against me, and how he responded after games was always something that I appreciated... When it came to see who would announce me, it was an easy choice... Good friend, continues to be so, and I'm grateful for that relationship.
There is no doubt that John Stockton has a lot of respect for Isiah Thomas. It is good to hear that Isiah Thomas was a good competitor, and Stockton clearly enjoyed playing against the elder point guard. There are a decent amount of basketball rivals that eventually become friends after their careers, and it seems as though this is the case here.
Both Isiah Thomas and John Stockton are among the greatest point guards to have ever played this game. Their abilities on the court are definitely underrated by a lot of fans though, as their playstyles weren't necessarily flashy. Hopefully, we see the two greats get more recognition in the future, but they are definitely respected by those who watched them play in that era.