Post-game Reactions

What’s next for the Big Three is the biggest question circling around the Internet right now in the aftermath of the C’s defeat in the Eastern Conference finals. Ray Allen has been, on the surface, the most likely one of The Big Three free agents to leave Boston it would appear, although as I’ve stated on Twitter and will cover in more depth this week, I don’t think it’s a sure thing Boston lets him walk away (nor should they).

However, a story that is picking up steam is the fact Rajon Rondo and Ray Allen had some tension between each other this year. Chris Mannix is well versed and connected within Boston circles, so his word here comes with some validity, although it’s not something I had sensed/heard about myself within the locker room this season. Here’s Mannix description of it in an interview on WEEI:┬áthis morning:

“There is going to be a ton of interest in Ray Allen in the offseason,” Mannix said. “He’s going to be able to pick and choose where he wants to play.”

Allen conceivably could return to Boston, but Mannix said that decision might be affected by Allen’s apparent struggles to get along with Rajon Rondo.

“I think there’s no question that the relationship was strained over this year,” Mannix said. “How strained is the key, and it’s still a little bit unclear. There was some friction between those two. I think that could play a role in Ray’s decision not to come back. Now, I agree, I think that Boston probably wasn’t going to bring him back anyway, you’re right, it’s Avery Bradley’s job and Ray isn’t coming back to the Celtics to be a bench player, especially when he can be a bench player on a team that might be more likely to win a championship. But I think the relationship over the last year between Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo soured. Now, I’m not entirely clear as to how bad it got. But certainly I know that there was some legitimate, palpable friction between those two players and I think that will ultimately affect his decision in free agency.”

A lot of things could pull Allen out of Boston this offseason, but my hope is any potential tension between Rondo and Ray is last on the list. Based on how these guys talked about each other after Game 7, I would hope that is the case.

More analysis on Allen’s situation and free agent possibilities to come later this week on CelticsHub


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Brian Robb

Brian Robb co-founded CelticsHub in 2009 and is the currently editor-in-chief. He is a producer and reporter at 98.5 The Sports Hub in Boston and also contributes to Boston.com and Bleacher Report among other outlets.
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  • will

    so many specifics…. where to start. Oh wait, Mannix literally said nothing in this article.

  • Zee

    Why is this news again? Who cares what happened in the past? They're obviously on good terms now. After Game 2 Ray had Rondo's back concerning the no-call.

  • tbunny

    If Ray wants to start or wants more money than Boston offers, that's understandable. But if Boston makes a good offer, why wouldn't they say you'll get big minutes? Wouldn't a Rondo-Bradley-Allen rotation be potentially incredible?

  • High Rollers

    You didn’t sense it though just watching the games over the course of the season? They definitely seemed the most distant from each other out of all the guys. But I’d cut them some slack here. Both had major obstacles in front of them this year. And they have such different personalities. Bottom line is that brothers don’t always get along, but that doesn’t change the fact that they’re family. If you don’t see the second part there, the first part is bound get overblown.

    • Anthony

      Agreed. There were a substantial amount of fastbreaks where Rondo doesn't even look Ray for the wing/ corner 3. Maybe it's me but I've become too accustom to Rondo-to-Ray for the 3 fastbreaks.

      I don't think the deciding factor to Ray coming back would be his relationship with Rondo. Other teams are just going to be able to throw a lot money at Ray. Celts need that money more for KG than Ray. Unfortunate but true.

      Certainly going to be an interesting off-season for the Celts.

      • CelticsBIG3

        Definitely saw a substantial decrease in Rondo to Ray dishes for 3. That is most definitely true; the connections were few and far between and the way Ray's movement to get open had been restricted, I could see him getting frustrated that he wasn't getting the ball for his "easy looks".

      • Maguire

        if a guy is playing bone spurs he isn't as good as we come to expect from ray allen over the years! rondo is the floor general and had to make what he thought was the best pass on the break!
        ray allen and rondo fought for each other in the playoffs ! that was clear!
        i also remember when ray allen struggled versus philly and during game 5 or 6 allen passed up a three! rondo went over to him and encouraged him to keep shooting!
        rondo didn't ignore ray! stop

  • Leonard

    Mannix is crazy. Until Ray Allen says he cannot play with Rondo(he is man enough to say it if it were true) then I don't believe anything Mannix says about those two.

  • Megawatt45

    For Mannix to be 'in the know' and put out this bit of gossip without actually siting examples or situations that back it up is just stirring things up. Either you do KNOW something and can back up what you know, or you are just trying to inflate your status as the cool 'inner circle' person who knows something nobody else knows and wont tell. It is juvenile gossip, not reporting. To suggest that Rondo would be the cause of Ray not coming back reminds me of the nasty popular girls talking BS and actually being the cause of friction. Right now I believe Mannix to be one of those catty girls.

    I wouldn't be surprised if the two personalities rubbed each other the wrong way as Rondo becomes more of a leader and looks less to Ray, PP and KG as role models; I'm sure with Ray's composure and Rondo's lack thereof…..there might be some small friction. But as High Rollers suggests: being brothers doesn't lack friction, but you still can love your family even when they drive you batty.

  • High Rollers

    Wishing Ray Ray great success with the surgery this week and whatever recovery it requires. Same to all Celtics working their way back from injury/ailment to come back stronger next year.

    • someguyinsac

      Same here and everyone not under contract already please return to the Celtics again too.

  • bostonceltics4ever

    This is pure BS! If you know something, tell it straight and not by making insinuations. Ray will be back if his surgery is successful. He has shown he is willing to take a substantial paycut with the last contract he signed with us. KG will do the same. I'm very sure the Big 5 will do what they can to make it a Big 5! You can tell it from their parting words after a failed Game 7. They know they've underachieved as a group. They know they can do more. Count these C's out at your own peril!

  • Batman

    Mannix being Mannix

  • yeah

    Not relevant to the article but here are some free agency names that stand out to me / I would want us to sign from this list: http://www.hoopsworld.com/2012-nba-free-agents

    Goran Dragic (probably a really good value)
    Delonte West (always want)
    Shannon Brown (just to watch him fly)
    Gerald Green (so I can giggle)
    Steve Novak (never misses threes…ever)
    Kris Humphries (rebounds + can actually move)
    Ersan Ilyasova (bloomed)
    Brian Scalabrine (always want)
    Lavoy Allen (seemed like a pain during our series against the Sixers)
    Roy Hibbert (restricted but wow would we be good with him)
    Spencer Hawes (if he's healthy)
    Greg Oden (upon leaving portland the curse will be lifted and any and all injuries he's dealing with will evaporate)

    • skeeds

      good picks…
      I've been into Ilyasova for a couple of years now. He's a steal. Highly under appreciated, for a guy with fundamentals as good as his.
      Dragic and Shannon Brown, along with Bradley and Rondo, will make for the fastest backcourt in the history of the Celtics. That will be FUN to watch.
      And if Ainge pulls off a Roy Hibbert, he's putting his name in for GM of the year right there. If you're gonna over-spend on a guy, he's the one to go for.

      • Ben

        if Danny pulls off Roy Hibbert he is overpaying a decent center to the point that his own team didn't think it was worth matching. There is pretty much no way you get a RFA without overpaying (Mayo is the exception cause he is a headcase and his team doesn't want him)

        • skeeds

          yeah, I know. "pulling off a Roy Hibbert" implies getting him without overpaying too much… And OJ Mayo, there's a reason Memphis doesn't want him. And we shouldn't be too hot on him either.

  • CelticsBIG3

    "Greg Oden (upon leaving portland the curse will be lifted and any and all injuries he's dealing with will evaporate)"

    Yah right

  • skeeds

    bullshit. Or to say it differently, "here we go again". Chemistry issues have been suggested for this group for years. And they are always wrong. Remember the "Doc wanting Rondo out" story? I think that was Mannix's too. Well, Doc crying on the podium proved that right, didn't it?

    There has been one confirmed story about Ray that is important though. He was almost (or completely) traded, without knowing it. And that was a bad, bad move. Ainge really screwed up. You can't go behind a hall of famer's back and trade him without informing him what's going. He deserves an apology for being kept in the dark, whether he comes back next year or not. And if we do try and sign him, we need to be classy about it. Give him specifics as to what his role with be, assure him of the team's continuing status as a contender, and give him a no trade clause for 2 years.

    That said, even if Ray goes to Miami, I'm fine with it. I hope whatever he does, he breaks more records and wins a bunch of rings. He's worth it.

    • CG12

      The "confirmed" story about Ray was no more confirmed than this one. Everyone knew Ainge was talking trades in the middle of the season. Ray was always the C's most movable piece. The trade didn't happen. That's pretty much all we really know. If I remember there was a late season piece by Gene Woj-whatever that tried to play that up, in similarly windy fashion. Don't listen to those stories – the writers spin them for their own reasons, and these types of stories should not be relied upon to assess what management is and is not doing.

      • skeeds

        My bad. Somehow I remember it being very specific, the thing about OJ Mayo and the trade falling through at the last minute.
        Anyway, I never ever give notice to rumors. There's exactly one reporter I trust on these things, Aldridge, and not at all coincidentally, Aldridge is the last to address any rumor, even though he's probably the most well connected of them all.

        The point is that Ainge did shop both Ray and PP before the deadline, without them knowing. PP even joked about it afterwards. Still have no clue why the hell Ainge wouldn't be clear about these things with his franchise players.

        • CG12

          The rumor absolutely was specific, but I feel like any "was almost traded" rumor needs to be taken with a monster grain of salt.

          I seriously doubt that Doc called Ray and said "you have been traded," and then had to take it back. Maybe "you are being discuss in a trade with Memphis" or something like that, but the description of a trade actually DONE, then somehow collapsing at the last minute / after the last minute is ridiculous and reeks of Woj rumor-monging. And Ray knew everybody could be in trade talks, including him, but management isn't going to approach a player with every potential trade. They would presumably tell the player when it is close to enough that it might actually happen and everyone needs to start mentally preparing for the possibility. I can understand that Ray might not have wanted to go to Memphis, but he could not have been surprised he was in trade talks. Woj also conspicuously cites NO sources, but rather makes vague, valueless references to "league sources." That's when you need to turn on your BS filter.

  • CG12

    Unbelievable breaking news! Two strong-willed people had some kind of agreement at some point in the past! They may disagree again! Stay tuned for more quotes from interviews with self-serving members of the media featuring nebulous statements with no actual sources or new information! Wooooo!

    • CG12

      * disagreement

  • High Rollers

    Fair $$ for Dragic, McGee (restricted and a definite long shot because you have to think Denver liked what they saw in the playoffs, no joke), Carl Landry, LavoyA, Humphries, and a handful of others… Hmm… These guys have real skills and each one would be a tremendous pickup for the Celtics. DA must be pulling all-nighters writing his NBA Christmas list. Not to mention, Draft Night in just weeks!

    • skeeds

      Remember, Denver traded Nene for McGee. It only makes sense that they plan to keep him. And Ainge sure as hell ain't dropping DeAndre Jordan money on him.

      • yeah

        I think Kris Humphries is going to have to be our number 1 target… sure he's a power forward, but I think our best bet would be having him and KG take turns playing center. The market for centers is really poor – it makes more sense to get a rebounding PF in this situation.

        If we can have Garnett and Humphries start, with Bass, Wilcox, Stiemsma, and a new and improved Ryan Hollins on our bench, I think we'll be in good shape.

        • skeeds

          I wouldn't say #1 target. I think Ainge's #1 priority would be to work some elaborate deal to land a top tier big guy. Remember, supposedly Pau Gasol's on the market. Chicago will be looking for scoring, and their bigs, the whole lot of them, are excellent.
          If nothing does come through, though, then yeah, Humphries is a very good target, along with Spencer Hawes, and any of the Lopez brothers, ideally Brook.

  • James Patrick

    Don't buy it. This core has been together for 5 years. They've had their ups and downs and weathered the storms. And with a coach like Doc, you REALLY think they wouldn't work things out? If Ray takes off for more money that's one thing, because of a relationship issue with Rondo, no way.

  • rich

    Now it comes out that the Celtics DO want Ray back, so Mannix may be wrong on this (as when he said he fully expected Garnett to retire! – HA HA!)