Ray Allen will be officially inducted in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame on Friday. Yet as Allen acknowledged in a recent interview, he doesn’t expect congratulatory messages of any kind from people he once won a championship with.
In an interview with Shams Charania of The Athletic, Allen was asked about about lingering discontent with former teammates like Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo. With Paul Pierce, Allen explained, he’s cleared the air.
“I talked to Paul a year ago today, and we patched it out,” Allen told Charania. “So much was made about my decision, and they were upset with me because I left for Miami. But it will never change what went on between us in 2008.”
Asked in a follow up question if he’s had any communications with Garnett, Rondo or Glen Davis, Allen simply replied, “Nope.” And his answer was almost as succinct when when asked if he expects any congratulatory messages from them about making the Hall of Fame.
“No, I don’t expect to.”
The ongoing feud between Allen and several former Celtics from the 2008 NBA Championship stems from the shooting guard’s decision to leave Boston for the rival Miami Heat in 2012 as a free agent. Rondo later compared Allen’s decision to sign with the Heat as joining “the enemy.”
Allen has responded to the perception of his relationships with former teammates at various times, including earlier in 2018 when Pierce’s number was retired at TD Garden.
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What we did in 2008 was special! Not only by Boston standards but by professional sports standards. The truth is, without any one of us on that team we would’ve never been able to do the unthinkable. Going from last place in one year to winning a championship is unfathomable. But, we did it! WE did it- Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo, Tony Allen, P.J. Brown, Sam Cassell, Glen Davis, Eddie House, Kendrick Perkins, Scott Pollard, James Posey, Leon Powe, Gabe Pruitt, Brian Scalabrine, Doc, Danny, everyone at the Celtics Organization, our wives, children, families, the Fans in The City of Boston and yes, me. Over the last few years I have been berated, lambasted and had my name smeared. You may not want to hear this, but I will always be a Celtic. (Fact). I will always cherish the bonds that I shared with all of my teammates and the people in the city of Boston. (Truth). We all gave everything we had. We all won and we all raised the 2008 NBA Championship banner together. (Ubuntu) Paul Pierce is the first guy that welcomed Kevin and me with open arms into his atmosphere from day one and we never looked back. Paul and I have spoken about our time together as teammates- going to battle night after night knowing we could count on one another and we have also talked about my decision to leave during free agency- a choice I made for my family. Despite what you may have heard or read or what is rumored- there is nothing but love. Paul and I are more interested in building bridges than putting up walls. To Paul, number 34, Congratulations on having your number raised up to the rafters. I salute you for your commitment to the city of Boston and to us the 2008 NBA Champions #thetruth
And in a recently recorded podcast series with NBC Sports Boston, Allen elaborated on his thoughts during his final season with the Celtics.
“There were parts throughout the season where I was starting to like, feel this type of resentment towards me on the floor,” Allen said. “And other people would tell me at first but I would ignore it because I don’t like people getting into my team business but people would always say ‘he looks you off…when you come off of a screen he sees you and he doesn’t pass you the ball when you’re open.'”
Allen won the ’08 Championship with the Celtics, and went on to win a second title with the Heat in 2013. The former University of Connecticut star was drafted with the fifth pick in 1996. He officially retired in 2016 as the all time leader in three-point field goals.