Ray Allen's future in Boston is uncertain, and the Celtics have, at least, one contingency plan in place.
The Philadelphia 76ers, Phoenix Suns, Los Angeles Clippers, Boston Celtics, and Indiana Pacers were the teams to contact unrestricted free agent Jamal Crawford as soon as July 1 hit, according to a person very close to the situation.
Crawford can score without a doubt. Last year, he averaged 14 points per game coming off the Trail Blazers' bench. He tends to have a poor shot selection, but that could change with the Celtics. I can't see Kevin Garnett allowing Crawford to rain shots left and right.
Boston will need offense next season, especially if Allen decides to bolt in free agency. Crawford isn't young (32), but he's a capable option for the coming years. He hasn't played next to a passing point guard like Rajon Rondo, and his numbers could jump because of it.
Who is the better option for Boston?
At this point, I would argue that Crawford is a better option than Allen. He isn't an elite shooter like Allen, but his age and versatility work in his favor. Allen looked very old through Boston's playoff run this year, and his days appear to be numbered.
At best, Allen appears to be a viable bench option at this point in his career.
Crawford isn't a perfect option, but the Celtics need something next season. Their success will ride on how many points they are able to score, and scoring will require a shooter.
Boston has the cap room necessary to add a player like Crawford, and his high-volume style would give the Celtic offense an added boost. He would excel next to Rondo in transition and would complement Avery Bradley as the team's other shooting guard.
There are sexier options on the free agent market, but Boston should do everything they can to make sure Crawford is playing in Beantown next season.