Allen looks to soar

WALTHAM — Recovering from right knee surgery last season, Tony Allen rarely dunked in the dramatic fashion that made him a player to watch as a rookie during the 2004-05 season. It was his hesitancy, and seeming inability, to finish above the rim on fastbreaks that clearly signaled lingering pain and weakness in the injured knee. So, when Allen received a perfect pass from Rajon Rondo during practice today at the team training facility, dunked forcefully and hung onto the rim long enough to earn a technical from the rent-a-refs present, it was an encouraging sight. Allen looks a lot like his old self, though he promises bigger and better play as training camp progresses.

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”I feel alright,” said Allen. ”I need more improvement, more strength. Then, I’ll be able to have a swagger. Right now, I don’t have my swagger back. I’ve just got to get stronger. It’s slowly but surely coming back. I’m not a psychic, but, when it comes, you’re going to know about it. When it gets to 100 percent, you’re going to know about it.”

And what about drawing the technical?

”[The referees] were playing,” said Allen. ”I let the rim go. I didn’t hang on it. But we’re not worried about that. We’re worried about getting better every day and helping my team win games. I just want to help my team whether it’s picking up Gatorades, hand claps, motivation, whatever it is.”

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