Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo reportedly don’t get along, bad relationship could impact Allen’s future with team
Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo don’t get along and it could impact Allen’s free agency decision, according to Sports Illustrated’s Chris Mannix. (WEEI)
“There is going to be a ton of interest in Ray Allen in the offseason,” Mannix said. “He’s going to be able to pick and choose where he wants to play.”
Allen conceivably could return to Boston, but Mannix said that decision might be affected by Allen’s apparent struggles to get along with Rajon Rondo.
“I think there’s no question that the relationship was strained over this year,” Mannix said. “How strained is the key, and it’s still a little bit unclear. There was some friction between those two. I think that could play a role in Ray’s decision not to come back. Now, I agree, I think that Boston probably wasn’t going to bring him back anyway, you’re right, it’s Avery Bradley’s job and Ray isn’t coming back to the Celtics to be a bench player, especially when he can be a bench player on a team that might be more likely to win a championship. But I think the relationship over the last year between Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo soured. Now, I’m not entirely clear as to how bad it got. But certainly I know that there was some legitimate, palpable friction between those two players and I think that will ultimately affect his decision in free agency.”
Am I shocked to hear there’s a little beef between Rondo and Allen? Not exactly. Allen admitted to Jackie MacMullan earlier this season that he and Rondo have clashed at times. In that same MacMullan column, Allen made a passive-aggressive complaint about Rondo’s work ethic. Perhaps it was that comment which prompted MacMullan to write, “Privately, his veteran teammates wish Rondo worked harder, longer.”
But do I think Allen’s free agency decision will be impacted by his relationship with Rondo? No. It was just two days ago that Allen — one of the NBA’s most composed people — teared up while discussing how difficult the Game 7 loss was, then included Rondo when he said, “The four of us, we know how to play basketball. We know how to win games.”
The Celtics love each other. They fight, they bicker, they differ on opinions from time to time. But if you watched every player come to the podium or address reporters in the locker room, you know the entire team shares a bond that goes a lot deeper than basketball. Hell, just last week Allen said, “You look around the league and you always question, ‘What does this guy stand for? Can you go to battle with him?’ That’s the unknown. But you know what you have in your locker room, and to walk away from that is tough.”
Allen and Rondo are very different. I’m not surprised to hear they don’t always agree. But they have co-existed for five years and they could co-exist again. They may not like each other, but they respect the hell out of each other. And respect goes a long way.