It’s been a few weeks but it wouldn’t be right if I didn’t say a few words about Ray Allen. On November 1, 2016 Walter Ray Allen Jr. officially hung up his sneakers for good. This has been a whale of a year for NBA retirements. Allen joined Kobe, KG, and Tim Duncan on the list of players waiting to book a trip to Springfield, Massachusetts.
Before the Splash Brothers there was Ray Allen. Ray’s jumper was so silky smooth and effortless that most forgot about his all around ability on offense. Ray could run off a string of picks to get open for a shot or take his man off the dribble and finish at the rim.
Allen who is often referred to as Jesus Shuttlesworth – for his role in the movie “He Got Game” – grabbed my attention during his days at the University of Connecticut. Allen’s jumper versus Georgetown in the 1996 Big East Final is an all time favorite of mine.
While at UConn; Ray was Big East Player of the Year, First Team All-Big East (twice), Consensus First Team All-American, UPI Player of the Year, and USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year (1995). In the NBA, he was a 2 time NBA Champion, 10 time NBA All-Star, 2 time All-NBA performer, 3-point Shootout Champion, and currently the all time leader with 7,429 3-point shots attempted and made at 2,973.
The things I admired most about Ray Allen were his work ethic and demeanor. If you watched any basketball the last 10 years then you’ve seen Ray’s pregame routine where he would make 150 jump shots from various spots on the court. You also saw how during games he never got rattled and even if he was, he wouldn’t let it show. It is those characteristics that made Allen one of the best shooters to ever play in the NBA and it’s no surprise that with the game on the line he was able to hit big shots. Thanks Jesus… it was a joy watching you play.
All stats and info courtesy of http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/a/allenra02.html