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Still Ray… Reviewed by Momizat on . Ray Allen’s departure from Boston was a touchy subject for Celtics fans initially, but once it became apparent that he was signing with the Miami Heat, it becam Ray Allen’s departure from Boston was a touchy subject for Celtics fans initially, but once it became apparent that he was signing with the Miami Heat, it becam Rating:
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Still Ray…

Ray Allen’s departure from Boston was a touchy subject for Celtics fans initially, but once it became apparent that he was signing with the Miami Heat, it became an act of treason. The 3-point king was a significant part of a title team and in Boston, that is synonymous with royalty. Well, until you leave them to join their most hated rival du jour.

Thus, his relationship with Rajon Rondo became an overblown topic of conversation and at some point Cs fans began to marginalize his talent.

Allen was old, his defense was atrocious, his ankles could no longer hold up and the multiple screens he required to get open hijacked the offense.  In addition, many questioned his dedication to the team when Rivers demoted him in favor of starting Aver Bradley and he made it known that he disliked the idea.

If we were to believe Celtics fans this past summer, Ray Allen was unproductive, he sabotaged the offense and was a team cancer.

But here’s the thing: with the UCONN product on board, the Boston Celtics were one win away from advancing to the 2012 NBA Finals.

The former Supersonic averaged 14.2 points and 2.4 assists per game on 45.8 percent field goal shooting and 45.3 percent 3-point field goal shooting in 34 minutes per game.

And yet, this past summer, the Boston faithful essentially got their TLC on and sang No Scrubs for the NBA’s all-time 3-point leader.

“No I don’t want no scrubs

A scrub is a guy who can’t get no love from me […] “

But make no mistake NBA fans, Ray Allen is still a solid basketball player as evidenced by his play so far this season with the Heat.

It may not be apparent to all, but Jesus Shuttlesworth has gone back into time a little and is playing like he did back in 2008 when the Celtics won the Larry O’Brien trophy. That might sound a little ludicrous, especially when taking into consideration that he is only playing 26.7 minutes per game this season in comparison to 35.9 minutes per game during the 2007-08 season. But if we project his numbers from both seasons over 36 minutes per game, here are the results we find:

Season

PPG

APG

FGM

FGA

FG%

3PT FG%

2007-08

17.5

3.1

6.0

13.5

.445

.398

20012-13

18.0

2.8

5.8

11.5

.504

.519

 

Save for the shooting figures, the numbers are identical.

The fascinating part of it all though is that Allen isn’t the player he was four years ago; it just so happens that his game is a perfect fit with Miami.

Indeed, when Ray left Boston, Doc Rivers articulated that the Hall of Fame player to be was unhappy with being a simple decoy, and wanted plays to be run for him. Consequently, 35.7 percent of his field goal attempts — also represents the majority of his shots — came as a result of him running through screens according to MySynergySports. And even then, there were times where his shots were contested, which explains his 43.1 percent shooting from the field in these situations.

And yet, in Miami, the sharpshooter has played mostly the part of decoy when comparing his output this season to his last season in Boston.

With LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh on the roster, it stands to reason that the majority of the plays would be run for the trio of All-Stars and that players like Allen would have to get their shots within the flow of the offense; and that’s exactly what’s happened. MySynergySports tells us that so far this season, the 10-time NBA All-Star is taking the majority of his shots in spot up situations. Indeed, 38.6 percent of his field goal attempts have come directly out of him camping out on the perimeter and waiting for the ball to find him, and he is hitting a sizzling 54.1 percent of his 3-pointers out of these situations.

It’s somewhat ironic really.

Allen departed Boston because he didn’t want to be a decoy, but Miami uses him as one and actually ends up with the ball and does damage from long-range.

As good as the former Celtic has been this season, where he’s really been dangerous is in late game situations. Believe it or not, Ray Allen is currently tied for the ninth spot in total clutch scoring (clutch situations are defined as the last five minutes of the game with the scoring margin within five points) in the NBA according to NBA.com’s advanced stats tool.

Mind you, as shocking as that might initially sound, it’s not a necessarily a huge surprise when one takes into consideration that Allen has been spoon fed by LeBron for open looks from downtown in late game situations. Per NBA.com, Allen is converting 41.7 percent of his 3-point attempts in late game situations and he’s made 10-of-12 free throws in the clutch.

The 3-point sniper is a huge part of why the Miami Heat are a perfect 9-0 in games decided by five points or less.

Add it all up together, and well, it makes perfect sense why Celtics fans felt betrayed when their shooting guard left town; he was and still is a freaking amazing shooter with ice water in his veins.

Taking his talents to South Beach might have been the best decision he could have made at this stage of his career and quite frankly it seems to be making perfect sense early in the season.

Statistical support provided by NBA.com.

Questions or comments? Feel free to leave them in the comments section or you can contact me by email at JM.Poulard@Warriorsworld.net.

About The Author

JM.Poulard

J.M. Poulard is the Warriors World editor. He is also a contributor to ESPN TrueHoop sites Forum Blue and Gold (Los Angeles Lakers), Piston Powered (Detroit Pistons) and Raptors Republic (Toronto Raptors). He has a particular fondness for watching Eastern Conference ball games and enjoys the history of the sport. Feel free to reach out to him on Twitter (@ShyneIV).

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