As of midday Saturday, the rumored blockbuster trade that would send Rashard Lewis to Washington and Gilbert Arenas to Orlando hadn’t yet been finalized, and all we had was speculation. But that didn’t stop anyone from talking about it — most notably not Celtics guard Ray Allen, who was Lewis’ teammate for four and a half seasons with the Seattle SuperSonics.
“I just heard about it this morning when I came in,” Allen said at Celtics practice on Saturday. “It’s shocking to me. They just signed him to a big contract a couple years ago. They’ve been in the Eastern Conference finals and the Finals over the last couple of years, so it’s not like they’ve been playing poorly.”
Lewis’ current team, the Orlando Magic, started the regular season 15-4 but have suddenly been thrust into rebuilding mode by a recent tailspin. They’ve now lost five of their last six games, including a difficult West Coast road trip.
The Magic were once in a first-place tie with the Celtics atop the Eastern Conference, but they’ve since slipped to fourth, five games off of Boston’s pace.
That’s led Magic general manager Otis Smith to start making moves, tearing his team apart in the middle of their playoff chase.
“That seems a little unfair,” Allen said. “A lot of their guys have been sick, so that threw their rhythm off a little bit.”