Ray Allen may be known for his dead-eye marksmanship from downtown, but Doc Rivers is the one who truly shoots straight. Clearly, Allen had a problem with Rajon Rondo. He had a problem with his own diminishing role with the Celtics, and in turn had an indirect problem with Rivers. Two words for that: Too bad.
Rivers was trying to do his level best to get the most out his Celtics last season, and the decisions he made were the result of his commitment to the cause. He has stated as much during an ESPN interview.
And I, for one, applaud Rivers for sticking to his principles. He was doing what he thought was the best for the team, and the results speak for themselves. Rivers took a gnarly, nasty, depleted roster and coached it to within a game of the NBA Finals. Had the Heat on the ropes – the Heat, with all of those stars in their primes.
Rivers thought bringing Allen off the bench was good for the team. And it was.
Just wasn’t good for Allen’s ego.
Rivers wanted the ball in Rondo’s hands, with him creating opportunities for himself and his teammates. You know, doing what a point guard is supposed to do.
Well, that apparently didn’t sit well with Allen. Mr. Control Freak couldn’t adapt to change, so he stewed on the change privately, and couldn’t wait for the season to end so he could get the hell out of Boston.
If it sounds as if I’ve lost man man-crush on Allen, you would be correct. Admire him, no question. Thankfully for the 2008 NBA Championship and all the memories that go along with it. But to have him bail on us just because he wasn’t getting his ego stroked…you would think that a player approaching 40 would be over that by now. That he would be secure in who he is and what he brings to the table.
Had Allen stayed and had he come off the bench, his stature would have only grown in the eyes of Celtics fans everywhere. Why? Because everyone knows that he’s still elite. That he can still do it. But having him subjugate his own ego for the good of the team, and to that degree? Allen would have achieved legendary status among the Celtic faithful.
Now he’s just another dude with mommy issues.
And Rivers deserves our praise for doing the right thing for the Boston Celtics. Turns out he’s the only straight shooter in this ugly divorce.