Ray Allen is perhaps the most likely of the Big 4 core that might be leaving town. The writing is on the wall. Ainge appears ready to move on to the next generation and Ray is going to want to play for a contender in his final years.
However, don't be too quick to pack his bags from Boston. If you listen to both Ray and Ainge, everyone seems to believe his bone spur issues are fixable and the rest of his body and game are just fine.
Allen will turn 37 next month, and contenders like the Bulls, Lakers, Knicks and Grizzlies are thought to be interested in pursuing him this summer. The Celtics agree with Allen's assessment of his future and will be interested in bringing him back, after he undergoes surgery to repair the bone spurs in his ankle that limited him throughout the playoffs. "People will think it's age,'' Ainge said of Allen's recent struggles. "It's not age. He's injured. And he'll probably return and recover and still have another couple of good years left in him.''
"There's still a lot of basketball left in my legs," Allen said. "I know that for sure. So it's hard to say what can happen, what may happen. But four of us know how to play basketball. We know how to win games."
The first thing Allen needs to do is get surgery to remove bone spurs from his ankle. "If I could do it tomorrow, I would do it tomorrow," he said. "That's probably my main concern right now, is taking care of that. My body feels good. That's my only issue."
There are other good shooters and shooting guards in the world that are closer to their 20's than their 40's. But there's only one Ray Allen; only one "best shooter alive." I guess it just depends on the complicated, multifaceted factors (Danny's gameplan, Ray's interests, etc.) at play.
So what do you think? Will Ray Allen stay or will he go?