Doc Rivers / Ray Allen
Celtics fans have been looking for a person to point to, to blame, for Ray Allen to turn down a ton of money to take his talents down here to Miami to play for the Heat. And well, Doc came out earlier today and put all the blame on himself. Read the AOL story below…
Celtics fans looking for someone to blame for Ray Allen’s decision to leave Boston for the Miami Heat—and for a lot less money—can point their fingers directly at Doc Rivers. And that’s straight from the coach’s mouth.
It’s was Rivers’ decisions to give point guard Rajon Rondo control of the offense and to move Allen to the sixth-man role that motivated Allen to move on, Rivers acknowledged. Many league observers believed Allen’s contentious relationship with Rondo was the key factor, which Rivers far from denies. Doc Rivers says he is probably a bigger reason for Ray Allen’s departure than Rajon Rondo.
“People can use all the Rondo stuff—and it was there, no doubt about that — but it was me more than Rondo,” Rivers told Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski. “I’m the guy who gave Rondo the ball. I’m the guy who decided that Rondo needed to be more of the leader of the team. That doesn’t mean guys liked that —and Ray did not love that — because Rondo now had the ball all the time. … ”
Rivers also made Avery Bradley the team’s starting shooting guard in the middle of last season. “Not starting bothered Ray,” Rivers added, per Wojnarowski.
Make no mistake-things weren’t exactly peachy between Allen and Rondo. Rivers said he had acted as a mediator between the two for most of the five years that they played together. But the relationship worsened in 2010-11 season, Wojnarowski reports, as Allen and Rondo “developed a deep disdain for each other.” Allen was not happy about his pay, or about his name coming up frequently in trade rumors.
Rivers said he saw the writing on the wall when Allen stopped returning his calls and texts after the Celtics lost the Heat in seven games in the Eastern Confernece finals.
“I thought, ‘Uh-oh, we’re in trouble,'” Rivers told Yahoo!. “And I just knew that Ray feeling like he had lost his voice in the locker room was a big obstacle, too.”