At first, Doc Rivers didn’t know how Michael Finley would fit into the rotation. Now, he admits Finley has earned his spot.
“I think he already has one. He’s one of the first guys off the bench. Right now he’s in [the rotation].”
Who’d he take out of the rotation? Tony Allen, of course. Allen said he was taken aback by his sudden lack of minutes. (Boston Globe)
“One minute you’re starting, running point guard,’’ Allen said. “I don’t know. It puzzles me, but for the most part I look at it like everything’s for the team.’’
The additions of Nate Robinson and Mike Finley seem to have dropped Allen in the rotation, but Allen, a free agent this summer, said he’ll continue to wait until his name is called.
“I’m always ready,’’ he said. “I’m a dog. I’m always ready to bite.’’
Allen sure is a dog. Celtics fans have been contending that for years.
So what are the differences between the two players entrenched in a battle for playing time? (A battle that Finley seems to have won.) Here are one man’s thoughts:
The differences between Michael Finley and Tony Allen
In between his ears, Michael Finley has a brain. In between his ears, Tony Allen has a thick skull and some play-dough.
When Michael Finley shoots from outside, you expect it to go in. When Tony Allen shoots from outside, you expect him to be hospitalized for an epileptic seizure.
When Michael Finley hears a whistle blow, he stops playing. When Tony Allen hears a whistle blow, he assumes he just turned the ball over. (Well, either that or he gets injured.)
Michael Finley has played basketball long enough to learn a few things along the way. Tony Allen has played basketball long enough to learn that it’s fun to foul a three-point shooter.
Doc Rivers can feel comfortable that Michael Finley won’t do anything stupid. Rivers would be doing something stupid himself to feel comfortable with Tony Allen.
The Celtics aged a few years when they picked up Michael Finley. I age a few years every time I watch Tony Allen.
So there you have it, folks. Finley, at 37 years old and no longer able to play great defense, isn’t the ideal backup to Paul Pierce and Ray Allen.
But he isn’t Tony Allen, either.