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Ainge: Celtics Will Likely Retire Pierce, KG’s Number, Not Sure on Ray Allen

danny.ainge.big3.doc.rivers.trophies.tradeIn what has become must-listen radio every Thursday morning on Toucher & Rich, Danny Ainge joined the guys to talk on a number of topics, specifically the future of the numbers in the rafters at the TD Garden.

Ainge told Toucher and Rich he very much expects for Pierce and Garnett’s number will be retired in the coming years. However, when being asked about the third member of the Big Three in Ray Allen,

“I’m not sure yet.” Ainge said about Allen’s number. “I don’t know the answer to that. It will be something the ownership of the team will decide. Who knows what happens when those guys careers are over and time settles in.”

Ainge also addressed whether Allen’s departure for Miami will have an effect on the Celtics decision to retire or not retire his number:

“I think that’s obviously somewhat of a factor. But I think time heals those hurts, and logic will take over,” said Ainge. “The question is did he play long enough and that kind of thing? There are a lot of great Celtics in history, and Ray Allen is certainly one of them. I know there will be consideration and discussion about that happening. We’ll see.”

Ainge also addressed questions on the trade market for Rondo in the interview: “Yeah, but I think everyone is just fishing right now. I don’t think they are anticipating anything happening. This is the time of the year where everyone is putting their toe in the water and getting started. I don’t know the answer to that with any of our players right now, what the value is. It only takes two teams to do a deal, but there will be a lot of conversation over the next few weeks over a lot of players around the league.”

Finally, Ainge gave Brad Stevens a strong vote of confidence despite Boston losing 18 of their last 21 games:

“Absolutely not. I’m much more inclined to give Brad Stevens an extension after working with him through this first season than I am of questioning whether he’s a good coach or not. He’s a great coach, he’s going to get better and he is learning. He’s very competent, hard-working, (and has) great integrity. All the things we said when we hired him are still there and still true.”

You can listen to the full interview at the Toucher & Rich page on CBSBostonSports.com.

  • YouSerious?

    Oh, come on! Ray Allen going to Miami does NOT affect what he did while on the Celtics. If you’re judging on wether he deserves to have his number retired by the Celtics, it should be based on merit and how long he was here for.

    This is a guy who had so many memorable, clutch 3’s to win games, seal games, ignite the team/fans…not to mention he had some of his greatest moments ever in that CRAZY Celtics-Bulls series when KG was injured.

    All in all, Ray Allen was a great guy while he was on the team. He gave the team everything he possibly could while he was here, and without him, we wouldn’t have banner #17.

    (Having said that, it IS true that Pierce and KG deserve to have their numbers retired before his, based on impact/longevity.)

    • Alberto A. Ramirez

      They should never retire Ray Allen’s No. 20. He may have contributed immensely to the 2008 title but what he did and stood for particularly when he dissed the Celtics’ 2012 free-agent offer that doubled that of Miami to join the hated Heat demonstrated that he was not a real Celtic, a player who should always put the interest of the team ahead of his own. How can you retire the number of one who betrayed the Celtics? His ego was bigger than his Celtic pride, and that’s anathema to what the Celtic philosophy – which covers numbers retirement – is all about. The bottomline here is that those whose numbers are retired have proven their loyalty to the Celtics beyond reasonable doubt, and can you say the same thing about Ray Allen?

      • The Cardinal

        Ray’s ego was no bigger than anyone elses. Riddle me this – if your name had come up at two consecutive trade deadlines and in fact, you were told you had been traded to Memphis for Mayo by Danny – but the deal fell apart after this conversation – how frickin’ enthusiastic would you have been to re-sign with a team that definitely tried to trade you once, probably tried to trade you twice, and given the progressive aging of its stars, would most probably try to trade you again?

        Everyone who continues to bitch about be.damn.trayal is correct – if you are Ray Allen, who was seriously betrayed. Why sign with a team that is willing to re-sign you only because what they thought was better didn’t happen? Why not sign with the best team in the league – where your unique talents are appreciated – and put yourself in position to win another ring?

        Any fool who is employed and is offered a better opportunity for him or herself is going to take it, so why hold Ray to a different standard than you would your own self? I pity you holier-than-thou hypocrites who continue to do so…

        • YouSerious?

          Thank you.

          • Jalen M

            But he could have went to any other team. ANY OTHER TEAM. But not them, not the Heat. That was what did it.

  • Rich

    You’re absolutely right. He should be judged on what he did with the Celtics.

    To wit: He played for the Celtics for five years and won one championship.

    Is M.L. Carr’s number retired? He played for six years and won two championships.

    • JStokes1313

      Ray Allen’s impact on the Celtics was slightly greater than ML Carr’s

      • Rich

        Not enough better. He wasn’t the equal of DJ, he wasn’t the equal of Parish, Bird or McHale. Shoot, he hasn’t even, in sum, been the equal of Danny Ainge.

    • YouSerious?

      Its fine if you’re arguing that Ray Allen shouldn’t have his number retired because he only played 5 years and won one championship. My only point is that we shouldn’t let him going to Miami affect the analysis.

      • Rich

        Actually, we can, and should.

        Ray, in leaving, did what was best for Ray’s legacy, right?

        (because the C’s offered him more money and a no-trade clause, so he wasn’t looking out for his bottom line).

        Was what *Ray* did best for the Boston Celtics?


        So, here’s the question: Should the *team* honor a guy who put his own legacy ahead of the team’s interests?


        That doesn’t mean he’s a bad person. It doesn’t mean he betrayed anyone–because, shoot, he was free to go.

        But it does affect the discussion about whether his number should be in the rafters.

        The Celtics have retired the numbers of two players who never won a title with Boston. Reggie Lewis’s number is self-explanatory. Easy Ed Macauley’s the other. Yeah. He was the Celtics’ first superstar. But he also signed off on the trade that brought Russell to the Celtics. Red did not forget that.

        • YouSerious?

          I just think that fan’s who call Ray some kind of traitor are overreacting a bit. The NBA’s a business, and players make decisions for themselves; what they want.

          If people don’t put blame on Ainge and the organization for hurting Ray’s morale by hurling him in trade rumors several times during his years here, then they can’t put blame on him for taking less money for better pastures.

          I still love Ray for what he did for the C’s, and for the most part, he’s a good guy.

          • Rich

            I agree. I, personally, was not betrayed by Ray. I don’t get the anger or bitterness. He did nothing to *me*. And I think Kevin’s snubbing of him, and “Oh, I lost his number” was childish.

            However, regarding Ray’s morale:

            It is a bit disingenuous to say, ‘it’s a business’ when discussing Ray’s departure, and then to blame Ainge for ‘hurting his morale’ by discussing him in trades.

            The “it’s a business” argument cuts both ways: If it *is* a business, then Ray was free to do as he pleased, but also immature for being ‘hurt’ by trade reports. And if it’s not just a business, then Ray had a right to expect more loyalty from the C’s, but he also owed them more loyalty, especially as they were offering him the opportunity to retire a Celtic.

  • Pingback: Danny Ainge: Celtics likely to retire KG's jersey, not sure on Ray Allen | Larry Brown Sports()

  • hax

    We respect what Ray did and helped the Celtics achieve. We also respect Jordan Crawford being a bit more mature and playing solid PG this year. Retired numbers are for those who truly Bleed Green.

    5 years, only about two playoff series where he played well, the rest were loads of (1 for 10 from 3 point FG). The good being the 2008 finals, and the 2009 Bulls series where Ben Gordon and Ray Allen had 3’s every other minute. He even got benched and replaced by a 21 year old Avery Bradley.

    He sold out Boston and it’s fans for a free ring with the other ‘screw home, I’ll go play on an allstar team!!!’ guys on the Heat. Paul Pierce was in trade rumors throughout his career. He didn’t run off to the Lakers/Spurs/Pistons to jump on a dynasty train. Pierce could have tested free agency and grabbed similar/more money a few times, he stuck with the Celtics. That’s bleeding green and deserving of a retired number.

    • YouSerious?

      Allen’s resume to have his number retired isn’t fullproof, on the contrary, I think that it probably won’t be enough. However, you gotta be objective. While Ray was on the Celtics, Celtics fans loved him, although I do remember some of those shooting slumps all too well (and the Heat are beginning to see him do that more often now).

      I don’t hold a grudge against him. Boston didn’t draft him, and he seemed like he was a bit of a different personality than KG and Pierce. However, he was part of an immensely enjoyable era of Celtics Basketball.

  • Mark

    Way off topic but look at that picture above. Four guys with the look of absolute joy on their faces while one is, I don’t know… You play your whole career for that moment and he has this plastic smile. You don’t get the sense he’s truly happy in that moment. Very sad.

    • Morpheus


      IMO Ray does not deserve to have his number retired as a Celtic. TRAYTOR!! His constant rants, bitching and whining about trade rumours, his role, backstabbing Danny, his diminishing importance as one of The Big 3. A Celtic great would never do that…NEVER. F**K Ray, let Milwaukee or Miami retire his number.

  • Bird

    Allen definitely does not deserve to have his number retired by the Celtics. Let the Sonics have him. The worst part for him is that he may not deserve to have his number retired by any team. His Sonics teams did nothing in the postseason and I don’t think he did enough for the Celtics to warrant his number being retired. And yeah the way he left Boston should disqualify him. The one thing Red valued was loyalty and he betrayed the team.This isn’t any old franchise either. There’s a lot of titles and retired numbers in Boston. The Celtics don’t need his name.

  • Spursfan4

    They had already replaced him and only offered him a deal when it looked like he was going to Miami. Plus Rondo and he didn’t get along and he was being turned into an outcast on the team. If he had re-signed for more money on the Celtics he would have zero pride and be a money chasing selfish loser, so it’s funny how you guys view the situation.

  • hax

    “In other Celtics news, Ainge is looking to clear as much cap room as soon as he can, so if he can find takers for Gerald Wallace, Jeff Green and Avery Bradley, they’re gone.”

    Saw this on hoopshype. Seems a bit fake. Bradley doesn’t cost us anything right now.
    But the report seems plausible in a ‘they aren’t our future’ way. If true, Ainge has given up on Green and Bradley.

    Does he plan on signing Hayward and Anthony is the offseason along with drafting Ambiid? :p

    • CelticsBIG3

      Dude Broussard wrote that. It’s horseshit.

  • Dan

    I’ve been bleeding “green” for over 50 years. Allen leaving still hurts, but no more than the three years of reading rumors of a pending Allen trade while the Celts were battling for playoff positioning — Ainge reaped what he had sown! More than some already hanging, Allen earned a retired Celtic number!

    • hax

      By that way of thinking, Rondo should have his number retired here(did a lot more than Ray). And he’s been in plenty of trade rumors the last 3 years. We should trade him before he leaves for a contender/more money and not get X-Ray’ed again. Unless he bleeds green like predator and stays for less like a true champion.

      That thomas-mclemore-thompson-2 1st round picks rumor straight up for Rondo looks so tempting though. Even if it was never a real offer.

  • Solich8

    Lets not forget that Ray had a tendency to disappear in multiple playoff series. He was horrid during that championship run in 2008 and luckily showed up in the finals. His horrible shooting almost knocked out the Celtics, and if it wasn’t for KG and Pierce, there wouldn’t be a banner 17.
    He was way past his prime when he came on board, and I think there is a lot of selective memories going on as to how great he was. If we are basing his retirement based on Ray helping win a championship then based on that criteria alone, James Posey shoukd have his number retired too, which in reality would be absurd. No offense to James but, Take away that Championship and we wouldn’t be having such a debate.

  • Solich8

    Its to my thinking that having your number retired with the Celtics embodies more than just playing great but also encompasses an individual to possess that intangible that make a player a great celtic. Some might call it Celtic Pride and others like KG assert that they will forever bleed green.
    That simply is not Ray. To have his number retired along side some of the Celtic greats truly will compromise the integrity of the Celtic tradition. Maybe if this was another organization there wouldn’t be a debate, but come on, every Celtic knows deep down in their heart who is worthy and who is not. Ray simply does not pass the muster.

  • akketangka

    The picture says everything.
    The core of Celtics 2008 championship.
    But as they grow old, they reached one point where Ainge think he gotta do what he gotta do to better the team, and decided to move Allen for a younger and more energetic player (OJ Mayo being one of the case) was one of his -even though it was later cancelled by the Grizz).
    Ainge felt he didnt do anything wrong to Allen -in terms of business. But Allen took it as a lead on how he should ever perceive all this -which is, business.
    Ange try to mend this by offering Allen twice the Heat money AND a no trade deal, and Rivers, Paul, and KG all begged for him to have another go. Just one more go together they said…with the original members of that 2008 team…
    But Allen has had it. He simply said no, and chose to shake lebron’s hand -set out to show the Celtics what they had lost -in the most painful way.
    The rest is history as we know it.