Judas Shuttlesworth: Ray Allen Turns Back on Celtics, Signs with Heat

Matthew SchmidtFeatured ColumnistJuly 7, 2012

MIAMI, FL - MAY 30: Ray Allen #20 of the Boston Celtics looks on in overtime as LeBron James #6 of the Mimi Heat gets set to attempt a free throw in Game Two of the Eastern Conference Finals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs on May 30, 2012 at American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Stunned. Angry. Bewildered. Those words don't even begin to describe what I am feeling this morning, as Ray Allen has done the unthinkable: He has signed with the hated Miami Heat (ESPN).

Not only has he just signed with the Heat, but he did so for less money. The Boston Celtics offered him two years and $12 million (Boston.com). He signed with Miami for three years, $9 million. The Celtics also were reportedly willing to offer a no-trade clause—something only Kobe Bryant and Dirk Nowitzki have in their contracts (Boston Herald).

It didn't matter.

To make matters worse? Allen came back and asked Boston for a three-year, $27 million contract (Boston Herald). That's right—he asked the C's for $9 million a year when he inked a deal with the Heat for $9 million total.

If that isn't a slap in the face, then I don't know what is.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, sources say that Allen's deteriorating relationship with Rajon Rondo and the fact that he was this close to being dealt at the trade deadline were key factors in him wanting to leave Boston.

Really, Ray?

I hate to break this news to you, but you are not the only one whose feathers Rondo has ruffled over the years. He is well known for being a stubborn individual who has continually grated on Doc Rivers' nerves. He is cocky. He is arrogant. He is Rajon Rondo, but everyone else on the Celtics was able to deal with it.

Also, maybe you didn't catch the memo, Ray, but Paul Pierce was also almost traded at the deadline (Twitter). Rondo's name comes up in trade rumors weekly. There were rumors that the C's were considering dealing Kevin Garnett for Josh Smith (NESN.com).

Do you see any of those guys throwing a hissy fit? No, because they are too loyal, too competitive and too honorable to leave Boston's organization hanging by going and taking up shop with a team that has become its biggest rival.

Yes, you heard that right. Miami, not the Los Angeles Lakers, is currently the Celtics' biggest rival.

Garnett was also a free agent this offseason. There is a good chance everyone forgot, considering he agreed on a new contract with Boston before you could even blink an eye. K.G. was too loyal to even think about going elsewhere. It was either stay a Celtic or retire. He wouldn't be caught dead in a Miami Heat uniform, and I'm sure he has some nasty choice words for Allen that nobody will ever hear.

I have to wonder what Garnett, Pierce and Rondo think of Allen right now. Apparently, Rondo didn't like him very much to begin with, but now? I'm guessing he despises him.

Garnett and Pierce? Sure, they'll remember the 2008 title that they won with Allen, and they'll remember the outstanding five-year ride that they enjoyed together. But what they'll remember most of all is Allen turning his back on them and the entire city of Boston by taking his talents to South Beach—signing with a team that has ousted the Celtics from the playoffs two years running.

Many people are comparing this to what Johnny Damon did to the Red Sox when he signed with the New York Yankees back in 2005. Now I am not a Red Sox fan, so I cannot even begin to imagine the kind of vitriol Sox fans must feel toward the Yankees and how betrayed they felt when Damon joined them, but you know what? I think this is worse.


Because the Red Sox never tried to match the Yankees' offer for Damon. With Jacoby Ellsbury waiting in the wings, the Sox weren't gung-ho on bringing the man who became affectionately known as Captain Caveman back, so they allowed him to walk.

That is not what happened with Allen.

Boston offered him more money. It offered him that no-trade clause. Danny Ainge did everything in his power to bring Ray back to the C's. It didn't work. Allen let his gigantic ego get in the way of his legacy, and that is unforgivable.

Some of you might say, "Well this is a business, and Ray has the right to do whatever he wants." That is absolutely correct. However, that doesn't make his decision any less deplorable, and it doesn't make him any less of a traitor.

I am someone who has always been very big on loyalty, so this just disgusts me in a way that I cannot even accurately describe.

I always thought Allen was a class act. I thought he was one of those guys that had it all together, one of those guys that fully bought into the concept of "Ubuntu" that Boston has preached ever since the Big Three got together in the summer of 2007.

All of that sobbing Allen did at the podium after the Celtics' Game 7 loss to the Heat? All of that talk about how he would never forget how the TD Garden faithful saluted the C's over the course of the final few minutes of their blowout loss in Game 6?

Call me cynical, but I think he is a phony. Maybe not on the Dwight Howard level of phoniness, but a phony, nonetheless.

Allen could have stayed with the Celtics, the organization that brought him his first and only title, and the organization that he spent the past five years of his career with. This organization clearly wanted him to return for another run. He could have stayed and went down in Celtic lore, likely having his number raised into the rafters down the line.

Well, that will never happen now.

Ray chose to join a team full of egotistical prima donnas who couldn't care less about loyalty, a team that has become Boston's most hated opponent. Don't think the Heat are more hated than the Lakers? Go ask Garnett, Pierce and Rondo who they hate more. My hunch is that each and every one of them will say Miami.

I never thought Allen was like that. I guess I was wrong. And for that, he will never be forgiven.

Judas Shuttlesworth.