Although he may not have been their top priority heading into the offseason, the Celtics would have preferred to keep Ray Allen. They certainly didn’t want him to sign with the best team in the Eastern Conference, but such is life in the NBA. Once Allen signed with the Heat, Boston turned it’s attention to former Rockets guard Courtney Lee as a replacement.
Austin Rivers believes the Celtics are better off with Lee. During an appearance on ESPN’s “First Take” on Wednesday, Rivers explained how he thinks Allen’s departure benefits both teams. He said the Heat will benefit in obvious ways by Allen spreading the floor and had the following to say about his father’s new squad.
“And I think the Celtics got better, because first off it was disappointing to (see Allen) leave because he was a part of that whole buildup to the Celtics again, but now you have a better defender in Courtney Lee, who is a great on-the-ball defender and someone who is going to add to the great defense the Celtics play already,” Rivers explained.
“And then you have Jason Terry, who is instant offense, something the Celtics need when you have older players like KG and Paul Pierce that get hurt. So when you have guys that are going to be inconsistent, not due to how good they are but how old they are, and the fatigue of a long season, you have guys who can come in and give you instant offense.”
Mix in the fact that Allen and Rajon Rondo had a known chemistry issue and Rivers has some pretty good points. Allen was a huge part of the Celtics philosophy, but at the very least they get much younger with the 26-year-old Lee. Austin also believes the Celtics are the only team in the East that can challenge Miami, and that may be true now that Dwight Howard has gone to the Lakers. Whether Allen tips the scale in favor of one team or the other remains to be seen.Google+