The Boston Celtics should extend the ultimate olive branch to Ray Allen from the the ceiling of TD Garden.
Former Celtics center Kendrick Perkins argued as much Wednesday on “Swagu & Perk” when he proposed the C’s could mend the years’-long rift between Allen and some of his former Celtics teammates by retiring his number. Many have raised the prospect of reconciliation after Allen and fellow Celtics legends Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett posed together for a photo Sunday at the 2022 NBA All-Star Game. Perkins, who played with Allen and Co. between 2007 and 2011, believes it’s long past time to welcome Allen back into the Celtics family.
“… I’m so happy that Paul (Pierce), Ray (Allen) and KG (Kevin Garnett) came together,” Perkins said. “And I don’t even care if it was just for a photo. Because with that photo that means there was some type of conversation. … That touched me in a different way, bro.
“This is not only guys that we won the championship with (coming) together. But we spent Thanksgiving together, we spent Christmas together, we spent Halloween together. I’m talking about all of us collectively at Ray’s house. So whatever basketball decisions were made and how that went down, I don’t even give a (expletive) about it because at the end of the day our brotherhood and what we built, umbutu, is way bigger than that, and we’re all grown.
“So here’s the thing that I want to address. The Celtics … they have to put an end to the pettiness, and I’m going to tell you why: Paul got his jersey retired, KG getting his jersey retired in a few weeks, hey man retire Ray Allen’s jersey. Let’s everybody just stop with the (expletive). Retire Ray Allen’s jersey.”
Allen played four seasons for Boston between 2007 and 2012. He was a key member of the Celtics teams that won the 2008 NBA Finals and fell one game short of another triumph two years later. He also was an NBA All-Star three out of his four seasons in Boston.
Whether those accomplishments warrant a permanent place in the TD Garden rafters is up for debate. Many undoubtedly will support Perkins’ idea, given Allen’s role as an on- and off-court leader of the Celtics.
And who knows? Maybe Garnett and Pierce would speak glowingly about Allen at his proposed number-retirement ceremony, bringing spectacular and emotional closure to the saga.