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Why Celtics Fans Have No Right to Resent Ray Allen's Decision to Leave Boston

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Why Celtics Fans Have No Right to Resent Ray Allen's Decision to Leave Boston
Chris Trotman/Getty Images
Ray Allen shoots for 3 of his 19 points in Tuesday night's Heat win.

You're feuding with one of your main coworkers.  You don't feel respected by your boss.  Another company can't offer you quite the same money, but you've already secured yourself financially.  You've only got a couple more years left in the work force, and you'd like them to be as peaceful as possible.

Switching jobs is a no-brainer, right?

Such is the position Ray Allen was in with the Boston Celtics.  And the fact that he left to go play for a rival shouldn't really matter.  He wasn't happy in Boston.   

Fans can criticize Allen as a traitor, but it isn't really fair to a player who showed all the loyalty required in sports and played out his contract.  As a free agent, he was entitled to his right to choose another team, and the fact that he did so should not make him reviled in Beantown.

Allen opened up to Orlando Alzugaray of WFTL 640 Sports (via SportsRadioInterviews.com):

It was a business decision, and the team put me in the position where we had to move. We had to go. Miami was a better choice for us based on what the team was doing. So it wasn’t—don’t boo me, boo the team in a sense. Now it’s out of my control.

When this contract situation came down, everybody in my circle—mom, family, brother, sister, friends from college, people who watched me since I was in high school and since I was in college—nobody wanted me to re-sign in that situation because they thought, ‘There [is] so much left in you, and this team isn’t taking care of you or treating you right.’ That’s the way I felt, and it was like, if you are going to come and not put out a good contract on the table, then, hey, we gotta think about going somewhere else.

Kevin Garnett doesn't have any warm feelings for Allen.

 

According to Allen, the decision was made not only by himself, but also by his circle of friends and family, who supported his decision to head to South Beach.

 

Does that not only further solidify his choice?

Ray Allen had repeatedly been placed on the trading block in Boston.  That lack of respect makes Allen's choice to leave "the company" that much more understandable.  

The circumstances surrounding him led Allen to do what any one in any profession would have done.  The fact that he left to go join the team that beat the C's in the Eastern Conference Finals shouldn't really be held against him.  

Allen wanted the best team situation and the best chance to win a championship, and he wanted to go somewhere where he felt he would be respected.  

Allen did everything that was asked of him in Boston, and he played out his contract.  He didn't gripe and demand a trade, though the team shopped him anyway.  And he helped bring the Celtics a 17th championship in 2008. 

Allen scored 19 off the bench in Tuesday night's win, and looked quite happy in his new surroundings.  He may even be the most likely to win this year's Sixth Man of the Year award.

After 16 years in the NBA, he has paid his dues. Now, at age 37, he deserves to do what is best for himself and his family.  And for his sanity.

So, play with a point guard you don't get along with, suffer a lack of respect from management and stay with a team that just tried to trade you numerous times?

You wouldn't do it in your career, so don't expect Allen to do it in his.

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