Ray Allen needs to drain just two more threes to become the NBA’s all-time leader in three-pointers made.
It’s hard to picture a more perfect setting to break the record than tonight: At Boston Garden in a nationally televised game against the Los Angeles Lakers with Reggie Miller, the current record holder, an analyst on the broadcast. (We use the term analyst loosely with Miller.) Allen has 2,559 right now, Miller 2,560.
It should be a coronation, fitting of a guy with as pretty a shooting stroke as the league as ever seen. A guy with a fierce work ethic. A guy who deserves the record.
It’s all perfect, except…
In four of the seven finals games last season, Allen didn’t hit one three against the Lakers (as Zach Lowe pointed out at The Point Forward).
The Lakers usually have Derrick Fisher chasing Ray Allen off his many screens (while Kobe Bryant gets the Rajon Rondo assignment). But they do switch that off at times. The Lakers staff has said what they don’t want is Allen to get hot early because then things steamroll with him and the Celtics.
Of course, tonight you can bet the Celtics will be feeding him early and often to get the record.
As they should — Allen is hitting 46.2 percent of his threes this season. For his career he has hit 39.8 percent from beyond the arc. And as he told the Boston Globe this is not a one-night thing. This is what he has worked for.
“I’m here because of the preparation that I put in my whole career,” Allen said.