Skip to main content

Marcus Smart's contract - lessons learned from the Allens (Tony and Ray)

 Marcus Smart will go into the final year of his 4-year deal next season, earning a team-friendly $13.8 million. Both Allens from the 2008 Championship team left the Celtics of their own accord, and there may be lessons there from the departures of Tony and Ray Allen that Danny Ainge may take into account in dealing with any new contract for Marcus.


Ainge openly lamented that he let Tony Allen walk away in the summer of 2010 to join the Memphis Grizzlies. The "Grindfather", as he was later known, admitted that he left, in part, because he felt overshadowed by Paul Pierce and Ray Allen. 

Ray Allen left the team in 2012, rejecting a 2-year, $12 million deal from the Celtics to accept a 3-year contract for $9 million with the Miami Heat. He, like Tony Allen, may have felt less-than-appreciated in Boston (per Sporting News' Sean Deveney):

Perhaps that’s where the problem started, then. In the book, Allen seems genuinely unsure of why Rondo turned on him so completely. Allen describes Rondo as a player who expected that he would be treated as a leader without having done the work to deserve the role, and describes the Celtics as an organization that could not figure out how to handle Rondo. Coach Doc Rivers asked Garnett and Allen to “let [Rondo] into the circle,” but Allen told Rivers, “We can’t make him a leader, Doc. He has to earn it.”

The locker room enclosing Doc Rivers, Rajon Rondo, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett was apparently a bit of a hotbed. And it seems that Ray, like Tony Allen, felt he didn't have enough control of outcomes. So what are the lessons as they concern Smart and his next contract?

Marcus may not be the caliber of Jayson Tatum or Jaylen Brown, but he very well could be instrumental in the team's future success. By NBA standards, he is underpaid and needs a raise. And he needs to be taken seriously.

One other point. The present locker room may not be as inflammatory as the one surrounding the 2008 Title, but there is a quiet struggle for on-court leadership going on. The best player is Tatum - the longest-tenured is Smart - and Brown has one more year of experience over Jayson. 

I honestly doubt that this "power struggle" will take the fiery path of the post-Title clashes, but rather I envision a more-placid reckoning. But as Deveney wrote:

But in the NBA, even the thoughtful are subject to the high-school vibe of a locker room.





Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Sign the Petition! Let's honor Tommy Heinsohn

  No longtime Celtics fan can watch games this year without a somewhat heavy heart. For the last 50 plus years, we have been blessed as a franchise to have Tommy Heinsohn, Mr. Celtic himself, as a part of the organization. Whether it be as a player, coach, or commentator, Tommy has been an instrumental figure for the green, and his presence is missed on every broadcast. Nobody embodied what it meant to be a Celtic more than Tommy, and I know I miss his energy and ferocity every time Scal claims the refs "made the right call" against the Cs. While Tommy obviously belongs on the Mount Rushmore of Celtics, he is often overlooked in his place among the greats of NBA history. Looking back upon his life, one would be hard pressed to find someone with a bigger impact on NBA basketball than Mr. Celtic. For those who are unfamiliar, let's do a quick review. Tommy is one of 2 people to be inducted into the Hall of Fame as both a player and coach (the other being the indomitable Len

We may be glad Danny Ainge rolled the dice on Theis

Frankly, I was not sure if Danny Ainge would ink Daniel Theis to a new deal, but it looks like a good move. Theis is signed for two years at a total of $10 million, with the second year non-guaranteed. With the departure of big men Al Horford and Aron Baynes, rolling the dice on Theis could work very well. In his first season in Boston, Daniel just kept improving. For the pre-All-Star stretch, he averaged 14.5 minutes/Game, 5.0 PPG, 4.7 RPG while shooting 52% on field goals and 30% on treys. Post-All-Star his minutes increased to 18.4 per game, his points to 7.8/game and his boards to 5.3/game. And he shot 68% on field goals and 40% on 3-pointers. Then a meniscus tear shut him down. His minutes and production took a hit last season, in part most likely due to lagging recovery from the injury. Right now he is playing on German's entry in the FIBA World Cup. In a game versus The Czech Rebublic, he scored 17 points, grabbed six rebounds, passed off for three assists and blocked tw

What Jeff Teague can bring to the Celtics offense

Bringing in Jeff Teague as some guard depth this year could end up being a monumental move for this year's Celtics team. Teague is a well respected veteran in the league, and having gone to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2015 with the Atlanta Hawks, knows what it takes to win tough games. Here's a brief look at why I think Jeff will be a great fit with the C's Every Celtics fan loves Marcus Smart , due to everything he brings to the table, from the defensive intensity to scoring outbursts. For all the good things he does, Marcus excels off ball, and can have his effectiveness diminished when he is forced to be a primary ball handler. He is often pigeon-holed into that role with the second unit (or when Kemba is out), and Teague's addition will hopefully allow him to play more off-ball and maximize his abilities.  At the deadline last year, Teague was traded to the Atlanta Hawks to play alongside Trae Young. His usage rate and effectiveness dipped considerably, as he