Miami Heat guard Ray Allen is quite possibly the greatest 3-point shooter that has ever graced a basketball court.
Actually, with a statistic of over 2,850 of those shots made, that’s basically a fact. He’s a 10-time NBA All-Star, an Olympic gold medal winner and has even won the league’s Sportsmanship Award. Heck, he’s even played a basketball player on the Hollywood silver screen.
But, after the Heat’s Game 7 victory over the San Antonio Spurs Thursday night in which Allen captured his second NBA Championship ring, is it maybe time for the 17-year veteran to call it a career?
Allen will have to do some offseason soul-searching to find that answer out, but I would have to cast my vote for hanging up the shoes and resting that flawless shooting stroke for good.
There’s no question that, should Allen decide that he is finished, he would be going out on top and not just because he grabbed another ring. No, he would be going out on top because the Heat were able to secure their latest jewelry piece because of him.
In the waning moments of Game 6, with the Spurs virtually ready to accept the coveted trophy, Allen stuck the dagger straight through their hearts. With five seconds remaining on the clock in regulation, the vet hit one of his famous, “how did he make that” 3-point shots, tying the game and sending it into OT.
Out of all the accomplishments he’s had in his career, that moment right there will be shown throughout future NBA Finals broadcasts for probably the rest of time. With Tony Parker right in his face, nudging him towards the baseline, Allen made the impossible possible.
It’s what he’s built his reputation on, and he cemented a legacy with that shot alone.
Aside from pushing that Game 6 into one of the overall greatest postseason athletic contests in history, Allen can also walk away saying that he won those two titles with some of the greatest to ever play the game. Names like LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett – these men and each owe some sort of gratuitous sentiment towards Allen.
This 2013 Heat squad especially owe a lot to his assassin-like abilities when the game is on the line.
Just because I have always personally been an advocate for not wanting to see any athlete stick around in his or her profession so long that you can begin to see their abilities diminish, this is also a reason I would love to hear an announcement that the veteran is deciding to retire very soon.
And this year’s blinding heroics aside, you can start to see a recession in Allen’s abilities. He can’t move around as quickly as he used to and his shot selection could also be considered a tad questionable at times. Because of what he’s accomplished, the guard is a creature of habit. Although those habits need to change at this point in his career, he simply can’t seem to grasp how to scale those back.
Tonight, none of that mattered for the moment. Ray Allen stood at the podium the all-time leader in three-point shots made and a two-time NBA Champion.
But, now it might be time for Ray Allen to begin the wait for his inevitable induction into the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Jack is a NBA Contributor for Rant Sports. Follow Jack on Twitter @JackJ14RS