File this one under “The Celtics should have just won Game 5 and afforded themselves a few days of rest.”
Ray Allen said his ankle bothered him during last night’s game, and isn’t sure whether he’ll have to miss time moving forward. (ESPN Boston)
“(The ankle) bothered more tonight than it had the previous couple games,” said Allen. “I didn’t have the confidence on it. Right now, it bothers me, but I have a day (Friday) to deal with it.”
Might Allen miss a game if the pain lingers?
“I never rule myself out,” he said. “I think it’s a day-to-day situation for me.”
Allen previously noted, “Today wasn’t a great day. I struggled with (the ankle). (Wednesday) was a transition day, but coming in (Thursday), it was a little tougher. I just worked through it.”
Allen missed six of his seven three-point attempts and two of his six free throws (he’s now hit just 8 of 14 free throws since returning to the Celtics’ lineup). Many of the misses were short, as he clearly couldn’t get the required lift on his jumper (though he did find the lift to attempt dunking on Josh Smith’s mug).
Last night also provided a perfect “Ray Allen or Avery Bradley?” moment. Bradley didn’t play great himself, but his pressure defense on Jeff Teague sparked the 16-0 run that allowed the Celtics to take control during the second quarter. His defense is always better than Allen’s, and both were similarly woeful in their shooting last night. Later in the game, the score was close, the Hawks stuck around, and Doc Rivers needed to pick a shooting guard. Allen was obviously hindered by his bone spurs, but Rivers still rode him almost the entire fourth quarter, except when he inserted Bradley near the end strictly for defensive purposes. Rivers obviously trusts Allen more, and you can’t blame him for that. Allen’s won dozens of games for the Celtics from behind the three-point arc. But the Celtics’ best lineup includes Bradley. It should be a difficult decision for Rivers, but he’s obviously leaning toward the guy who’s won playoff games for the Celtics before.