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Ray Allen chooses Miami Heat over Boston Celtics

Jul 6, 2012, 9:57 PM EDT

Boston Celtics v Miami Heat - Game One Getty Images

If you can’t trust the team owner to break news, who can you trust?

Miami Heat owner Micky Arison tweeted this Friday night:

Its 2:30am in London and I was just woken up with great news. Welcome to the family #20!!

Ray Allen has chosen the Miami Heat over the Boston Celtics for next season. He sacrificed a larger paycheck and familiarity to go after a ring in South Beach.

Allen has called the Celtics to inform them of his decision, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports (and the NBC Sports Network). Allen’s agent has confirmed the decision to the Associated Press. It’s as official as it can be until Allen signs a contract on July 11.

This is a huge free agent get for the Heat — they have spent two seasons trying to find a consistent three-point threat to go around LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. Shane Battier struggled last season (but was better in the playoffs). Mike Miller has been banged up for two seasons, but you saw what happened in Game 5 of the NBA finals when the Heat had him knocking down open looks — they were an unstoppable offensive force. The penetration and threat of LeBron and Wade give guys at the arc time to set their feet — plus pretty much pitch a tent, light a bonfire and make some smores — before they have to shoot.

Allen, the NBA’s all-time leader in three-pointers made and shot 45 percent from beyond the arc last season, should thrive in that setting. Which was why he was the Heat’s top free agent priority. LeBron and Wade were tweeting him, and Pat Riley was working his magic. Riley’s sales job was impressive and really helped sway Allen, Wojnarowski reports. He sold him the same way he sold Wade and Bosh (and the way the Celtics sold free agents to come during the big three era) — shared sacrifice to chase a bigger goal.

Miami could only offer half has much money as Boston — $3 million to take his talents to South Beach vs. $6 million to stay in green — but this wasn’t really about money. Allen has made a lot of money, $178 million over the course of his career. It was about the chance to win a ring. It was also about how he fit in — Boston wants to expand Avery Bradley’s role and just agreed to terms with Jason Terry as a free agent (who is an upgrade over Allen at this point in their respective careers). Allen’s role there was shifting.

You can bet this adds some fire to the rivalry on the court and in the stands between the Heat and Celtics. Allen has left his home for the last five seasons and where he won a ring in 2008 for a hated rival. Some Boston fans will turn on Allen now. Be ready for plenty of “Judas Shuttlesworth” jokes. But he was a free agent who played out his contract and had the right to make his call. How much of a role his reportedly strained relationship with Rajon Rondo, or how much he was frustrated about the Celtics shopping him around at the trade deadline, played into his thinking are good questions we may never know the answer to. But there seemed to be something after all the trade rumors around Allen — he asked for three years, $27 million to stay in Boston, reports the Herald. Boston would go no higher than two years, $12 million.

With the Heat he plays a key role with a great shot at another ring, and that seemed to matter.

126 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. mikey1977 - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:06 AM

    Tremendous respect for Ray….but in this case…what a sell out…

    • blueintown - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:52 AM

      This cockamamie notion again? It’s not selling out if you take LESS MONEY.

    • guyaneserj - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:54 AM

      Why is is he a sellout? Do u even know what ur saying? You do realize that the Celtics have tried to trade him three times in the last year — you want him to be loyal to you after you were willing to ship him out for the hot new thing without blinking? REALLY?

    • bozosforall - Jul 7, 2012 at 10:21 PM

      Typical lame crybaby comment from a loser Puh C’s fan, Mikey. Stick to eating Life cereal, loser.

    • ear123 - Jul 8, 2012 at 3:37 AM

      You’re an Idiot, “listen” to yourself.

      First you say you have respect for Ray then you bash him and saying he’s a sell out. Really? Where’s the respect? You’re “contradicting” yourself !

      He played out his contract and owes nothing to boston. Get your facts straight MORON.

  2. turnmymicup - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:12 AM

    This guy Pat Riley really is the best ever. He focused on creating a Dynasty and hasn’t failed yet. Can anyone think of a better piece to add to this Miami system? Hard isn’t it? Mike Miller looked 20 yrs younger during the finals. Just imagine Ray with those wide open looks. Well no need to imagine now. Welcome home Ray Allen.

    • adfranco - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:50 AM

      Um, a center? That should have been their first priority. They already have Mike Miller. If D Howard goes to the Nets to form another superteam, you expect C Bosh to stop Howard? Thing again.

      • turnmymicup - Jul 7, 2012 at 1:49 AM

        The Heat just proved you can win without a “true” center. Not much Dwight can do guarding Bosh out at the three point line. On the other end LeBron can guard Howard. He’s done it before with no problem. MVP.

      • cassmoney - Jul 7, 2012 at 2:40 AM

        Well they do have a meeting set up with Marcus Camby this weekend. There’s the center who is likely to sign right there

      • thestudiokida - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:19 PM

        A true center like Kendrick Perkins? The Heat just made a fool out of him.

    • adfranco - Jul 7, 2012 at 1:34 PM

      LOL. What teams did the Heat have to go through that had a dominant center at the other end to get to their championship? They didn’t care about guarding K Perkins, he wasn’t an offensive force. Point is, they got away with playing small ball in these last playoffs, but you can’t expect that to happen every year. Lebron stopped D Howard? When? The only time he played him in the playoffs was in 2009 when his Cavs (who were better on paper than the Magic) lost to Orlando.

  3. taron2in1 - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:12 AM

    Ray can’t count.

  4. jsactooc - Jul 7, 2012 at 12:37 AM

    I am amazed at the comments on this story. I’m not a Celtics fan or a Heat fan, so I’m looking at this objectively. Ray did his job in Boston. I just can’t see how Celtics fans see this as some sort of being a traitor to go to a competitor for less money when that is the reason that they got KG and Ray to begin with. He didn’t follow the money, he followed an opportunity and a chance to win. Business is business and the Celtics have benefited from veterans that were willing to take less money to win than just about every other team in the league.

  5. saintsfan83 - Jul 7, 2012 at 1:07 AM

    Celtics need an explanation!!!! And Tiki ‘s flabbergasted

  6. pcase27 - Jul 7, 2012 at 1:24 AM

    Another sad excuse of a competitor, nothin like joining a rival just to piggyback your way to a championship. Shoulda just joined the lakers.

  7. jumpman2325 - Jul 7, 2012 at 1:27 AM

    The BOS/MIA series wouldn’t have gone 7 games if Bosh was healthy for the first 4 or 5.

    • franciscomc68 - Jul 11, 2012 at 12:17 PM

      And the series wouldn’t have gone to a game 7 if the refs hadn’t stolen game 2.

  8. davidschap - Jul 7, 2012 at 1:28 AM

    Misterdreamer: rays defense is better? Than Bradley? No way. Love ray but if it’s time it’s time.

  9. tomtravis76 - Jul 7, 2012 at 1:55 AM

    Jesus takes his talents to SB.

    Follow the leader Elton Brand, you are already getting paid 18 million this season, take that minimum and be apart of The Heat dynasty, everyones doing it.

    • cassmoney - Jul 7, 2012 at 2:41 AM

      Jesus Shuttlesworth about to get another ring

    • philadelphiafan - Jul 7, 2012 at 10:10 PM

      Teams under the cap have first crack at Brand. Not his choice until he clears waivers.

  10. txnative61 - Jul 7, 2012 at 2:53 AM

    Didn’t the Celtics call this shot? Boston fans should lay off, every indication told Ray he wasn’t wanted, or needed. He played out his contract at a very high level, and took less money to play where he was sincerely wanted, can play longer and more effectively with at least as good a chance to get another ring that he helped to earn. Character guy can mentor Miami’s shooters for several years and still bring a hot hand occasionally. Works for everybody, by my thinking. Of course the Celts will still be losing, but that’s likely in any case, as with this year.

  11. pftwstbshmc - Jul 7, 2012 at 6:11 AM

    Well Ray you just turned into another POS for Boston fans to boo whenever you come to town. How could anyone with the caliber of professionalism you have displayed over the years go to such a POS thug team as the Cold? Proves that fact is stranger than fiction…

    • guyaneserj - Jul 7, 2012 at 7:58 AM

      Wow! Are u actualy believing the NONSENSE that is spewing out of ur mouth? He lacked professionalism? REALLY? You do realize that the Celtics have tried to trade him three times in the last year — you want him to be loyal to you after you were willing to ship him out for the hot new thing without blinking? It’s a business, get over it…

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