The declaration stands, even after the Celtics reached agreement with Jason Terry yesterday. The former Dallas guard agreed to a three-year contract that will pay him approximately $5 million next season, and just under $16 million by the end of the deal.
It would seem the 2009 Sixth Man of the Year — a player so important during the Mavericks’ 2011 title run — would duplicate Allen’s first-shooter-off-the-bench role.
But Ainge, who called Allen “our No. 1 priority” last Sunday, a day after reaching agreement with Kevin Garnett, hasn’t changed his mind.
“We’re still going after Ray,” a team source said yesterday.
Read full article after the jumpTerry, too, seemed to welcome the chance to have Allen as a co-sixth man when he told Fox Sports Florida yesterday, “That wouldn’t hurt.”
Of course, there was little not to like about his new situation.
“I just love that they have a championship pedigree,” said Terry, who was reportedly unable to get a third year out of Dallas. “And I think their point guard (Rajon Rondo [stats]) is the best in the business at controlling both ends of the floor. And they’ve got Hall of Famers.”
Allen, though, has had second thoughts about the Celtics. He was bothered by his role as Ainge’s prime bait at each of the last two trade deadlines. The Clippers, whose officials will host Allen on Friday, can also offer him a starting job.
There are also growing reports about Allen’s dissatisfaction with Rondo. The two have often argued on the floor, but the situation reportedly worsened over the last year. Allen, who tends to blame his worst nights on poor ball movement, has occasionally been left alone in the corner, without a pass, by Rondo.
Even without Terry’s emergence as a Celtic, Allen’s search for his next contract, and possibly a new team, is about to accelerate.
Allen’s agent, Jim Tanner, confirmed yesterday that the guard, probably the most in-demand shooter on the market, has scheduled visits with Miami tomorrow and the Clippers on Friday.
Allen also talked to officials from Memphis and Minnesota earlier this week.
“And we’re still talking to the Celtics,” Tanner said.
The Heat’s interest is well-known, but the team is also at a disadvantage in terms of what it can offer. The Celtics, who have the guard’s Bird rights, are prepared to offer Allen $12 million over the next two years.
Though Miami is prepared to offer a third year, the Heat can only give Allen the $3 million mini-mid-level exception. That’s the penalty for any team with a payroll over the $74 million luxury tax threshold.
Read Full Story over at Boston Herald