The general consensus around the NBA is that Ray Allen will sign with Miami. “Barring a change, he’ll join the Heat,” said a league source.
— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) June 27, 2012
Allen, whose about to turn 37, would take less money to sign in Miami. The Heat would likely offer Allen the $3.09 million taxpayer mid-level exception for next year which would put the Heat further into the luxury tax.
Allen averaged the least amount of points in a season this year since his rookie season at 14.2 per game. Allen did shoot a career-high .453 percent from three this season despite missing 20 games in the regular season due to injury.
Allen struggled in the playoffs though averaging 10.7 points per game and shooting just .304 percent from three.
Allen was coming off the bench for Boston in the playoffs and would likely do the same in Miami. Allen underwent right ankle surgery on June 13 to have bone spurs removed.
The Boston Celtics and Danny Ainge are still optimistic that Allen may stay.
“Yeah, I think Ray’s open to coming back,” Ainge told ESPN Boston. “But, listen, I don’t know. I won’t even get into details with talking to players other than the exit interviews and Ray was getting rehab here, and we’ve talked. So I have a feel of where his head is, but I’ll know more in July.”
Allen is one of a few big names rumored to possibly be targeted by Miami this offseason. Steve Nash and Jason Terry are two others.
Nash has said that money is still a factor with who he signs with this offseason. Miami would only be able to offer him around $3 million while Nash may be able to get closer to $10 million other places.
Nash also said that signing somewhere to take less money is great to try and win a championship but that it’s not that easy to win a title and only takes one injury to hold you back.
Allen would probably be the best fit for Miami of any of these possible free agents. You can imagine a closing lineup of LeBron, Wade, Bosh, Battier and Allen being pretty tough to deal with.
In the NBA Finals we all witnessed just how many opportunities 3-point shooters can have playing with LeBron. The Heat even tied an NBA Finals record with 14 made threes in their clinching Game 5 win versus the Thunder.
Mike Miller led the way in that game with seven made threes but there is a chance he will retire because of an ailing back this offseason, making the push to go after Allen even more important for Miami.
A potential signing of Allen in Miami would be a perfect fit for the Heat and a great move but it wouldn’t swing the balance of power too drastically in their favor.
Just look at how effective Miami’s shooters were in the Finals this year. Allen is a great shooter and would help them replicate that kind of performance in a series but what Miami did in the Finals was the best case scenario for them. They wouldn’t be guaranteed to match that again even with Allen.
Miami prides themselves on defense too. Allen has certainly taken a step back in that department in the last few years. Shane Battier and Mario Chalmers’ contributions on defense were just as valuable as what they did as spot-up shooters.
It will definitely be a huge signing for the Heat either way if they get Allen. It’s the kind of move that you would expect from Miami if they are going to repeat as champions.