Ray Allen is beginning to make his visits, but they aren’t including the Oklahoma City Thunder, at this point, despite rumors to the contrary when the NBA free agency period began. Instead the Boston Celtics sharpshooter is taking time to reportedly visit the Miami Heat and Los Angeles Clippers as he searches for his new team. Of course, the Celtics are expected to make every effort to re-sign him.
Allen will have to choose between a certified starting spot and financial priorities when it likely comes down to it. A team like the Miami Heat is not going to have a starting slot for him — at least on the surface — unless they make further moves or a promise to do so. The Celtics even replaced Allen down the stretch.
At the same time, the Clippers, who can offer that spot, according to David Aldridge, doesn’t have the financial sway that the Celtics can bring to the table.
Aldridge writes, "The Heat can only offer Allen their mini mid-level exception that starts at $3.09 million next season, the same exception Miami used last year to sign free-agent forward Shane Battier. The Clippers have their full mid-level available at $5 million. Boston has offered Allen a two-year deal for $12 million."
It’s hard to picture Allen signing with anyone but the Celtics after Kevin Garnett re-upped for three more seasons. Then again, the amount of player movement already this offseason shows that anything is possible. Perhaps OKC can even get back into the Allen sweepstakes.