Ray Allen was a noticeable absence from Paul Pierce's jersey retirement ceremony Sunday, though it was apparently on the mind of the former Boston Celtics sharpshooter.
Allen's relationship with Pierce and Kevin Garnett - who collectively formed the 2008 champion Celtics' Big Three - has been shaky at best since Allen left for the Miami Heat as a free agent in 2012. In fact, Rajon Rondo, the point guard on those Boston teams, revealed last March that some former Celtics told him not to invite Allen to a reunion trip to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the championship.
But despite the supposed animosity between Allen and his ex-teammates, one of the best 3-point shooters in NBA history apparently wanted to attend the Celtics' jersey retirement for Pierce, but told former Boston coach Doc Rivers he feared he'd only serve as a distraction.
"I did think it would have been great for Ray to have been there," Rivers told Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe. "But there's just angst right now and in Ray's defense, I know he thought about coming, I can tell you that, because I talked to him personally. He didn't know if he should. He didn't know if it was the right time.
"He really didn't want to take anything away from Paul or be a distraction and he won't be and that's what we've got to convince him of. If he would have been there, the fans would have cheered for him. That will happen eventually, you've just got to figure out when."
Allen was chided by some fans for not attending the event in honor of his former teammate, and the criticism was made worse after the retired shooting guard posted a photo of himself golfing on the day of the ceremony.
Allen attempted to shut down talk of the apparent rift between he and his former colleagues late Tuesday, taking to social media to congratulate Pierce on having his No. 34 retired while referencing the entire 2008 Celtics roster and staff that contributed to their championship victory.