That Ray Allen apologist? LeBron James. LeBron’s one of my favorite players in the league. Easily. But that fact won’t sway me from shaking my hand and being annoyed by the argument this guy has fabricated.
I appreciate what Ray Allen did for my Boston Celtics when he was a member of the team. He was a part of the “Big Three” with Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett that delivered an NBA Finals victory in 2008 and a Finals appearance in 2010. Again, I appreciate that. But in the summer of 2012, he left the Celtics and signed with Miami Heat, a team that had defeated Ray and the Celtics back to back years in the 2011 and 2012 playoffs.
Before I continue, let me just say that I’m big on loyalty when it comes to life, but when it comes to sports? There’s no place for it, because sports as a whole is a business. The NBA is a business. Perhaps 40 years ago, there were players remaining on the same team for their entire careers, but that was before the salary cap, and definitely before free agency was ever a big thing. I just wanted to make that clear before I continue, because I don’t want to make myself look like a hypocrite considering how I’ve defended LeBron James over the years for his departure from Cleveland.
A year ago there was a stream of vitriol from Boston aimed at Ray Allen after he chose to sign with the Heat in the offseason. Kevin Garnett said he lost Allen’s number, Paul Pierce said he hadn’t forgiven him and Doc Rivers implied Allen had an ego problem.
Now all three of them are also out of Boston, agreeing to go to teams seemingly on the brink of contention instead of sticking around for Boston’s rebuilding project. Garnett waived his no-trade clause so he could go to Brooklyn in a package with Pierce after he agreed to the deal. Rivers engineered his own trade that allowed him to become the coach of the Los Angeles Clippers.
LeBron talked about his teammate Ray Allen recently and said this of former Celtics Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett:
“I think the first thing I thought was ‘wow, Ray got killed for leaving Boston and now these guys are leaving Boston. I think it’s OK, I didn’t mind it. But there were a couple guys who basically (expletive) on Ray for leaving and now they’re leaving. That’s the nature of our business, man. I don’t know what Boston was going through at the end of the day. I know Ray had to make the best decision for him and his family and his career. Doc, KG and Paul did that as well. You can’t criticize someone who does something that’s best for their family
Uh, LeBron? Get your facts straight — Ray Allen chose to leave the Boston Celtics under his own volition during the summer of 2012 in free agency. He didn’t do it for his ‘family’. What the fuck? He did it because he wanted to play on a top-tier championship team; he did it because he was tired of Rajon Rondo’s juvenile and immature antics; he did it because he didn’t appreciate what Danny Ainge was doing in the front office in Boston. Family? Family? Family? No. Get the fuck out.
Kevin Garnett nor Paul Pierce “did that as well”.
Whether Garnett or Pierce wanted to or not, they were NOT going to be members of the Boston Celtics for the 2013 NBA season. General manager Danny Ainge had already made the decision following the first round playoff loss to the New York Knickerbockers to go with a youth movement. Ainge also didn’t want Doc Rivers around for this rebuilding process, either. Garnett nor Pierce wanted to leave the Celtics, but KG waived his no-trade clause as a sign of respect for the franchise and agreement to move on as the Celtics would revamp the entire team.
Apples and oranges.