Along with the trade for Kevin Garnett, the 2007 acquisition of Ray Allen helped rejuvenate the Boston Celtics franchise, with the Big Three of the two aforementioned All-Pros and Celtics mainstay Paul Pierce leading Boston to the 2008 NBA title.
However, when Allen opted to join the New Big Three of the Miami Heat in 2012, not long after the Heat had edged the Celtics 4-3 in the Eastern Conference Finals, many Celtics felt betrayed, point guard Rajon Rondo in particular.
Allen’s betrayal led to several uncomfortable experiences, such as the revelation that he and Rondo didn’t get along and, of course, the really awkward exchange between Allen and KG in their first game playing against one another since Allen joined the Heat.
Not helping matters, Allen’s clutch three-pointer helped Miami stave off elimination in the 2013 NBA Finals, which the Heat won in seven games. And five years later, several former Celtics still hold a grudge over it.
Rondo is in the process of planning a vacation for all of the members of Boston’s 2008 championship team…minus Allen. Intended to be a fun get-together around the time of the 10-year anniversary of the title, the vacation is Rondo’s way of getting the band back together to reminisce about the good, old days with the Celtics. Evidently, having Ray around would just kill the mood.
Rondo explained in an interview on the subject that several of his ’08 teammates shot down the idea of inviting Ray, still hurt by the fact that he left them to play for the enemy. Although it may seem a bit petty to resent Allen after all of these years, a lot of those guys on that Celtics team were throwbacks, the last representatives of a time when the NBA was built upon loyalty and staying true to one’s team.
Allen is one of the greatest players to ever don a Celtics jersey, though, and hopefully, amends will be made at some point. Maybe now just isn’t the right time. So Allen will have to miss out on the shindig with his old teammates, but one look at that 2013 championship ring will probably keep him from losing sleep over it.