Tony Allen calls out OKC, Cavs for ‘petty’ handling of Durant, Irving exits
Tony Allen received a hero’s welcome upon his return to Memphis as a member of the opposition, and he is upset that some other ex-franchise stars around the NBA did not receive the same treatment by their old teams.
In an interview with Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated that ran on Friday, Allen called out the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Cleveland Cavaliers for their respective handlings of the Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving departures.
“That’s kind of being petty for the organization,” he said of not playing a video tribute for a former star. “It’s premeditated. They thought about doing that before you even came back. To give [Durant’s No. 35] jersey away [to another player], a guy who has been in multiple MVP conversations, scoring champs, got those guys to the [2012 Finals] … And another guy like Kyrie, who won a championship for those people, it’s a sign of disrespect, a sign of pettiness.”
Allen, who played seven seasons in Memphis before signing with the New Orleans Pelicans this summer, got a video tribute from the Grizzlies upon his return earlier this month and will also be getting his jersey retired by the team further down the road. Those are courtesies that neither Durant, who played eight seasons for the Thunder, and Irving, who played six for the Cavs, received. Of course, Durant has thrown shade at his former club since leaving (ditto for Irving as well), so maybe the pettiness goes both ways here.