Ray Allen is in the conversation for being the best shooter in NBA history. Steph Curry and Klay Thompson might have something to say about that, but Allen was the type of player who was automatic when he got his feet set and he was able to get a shot off. Add in that he hit one of the biggest shots in NBA history during the 2013 Finals and his bonafides as a shooter are clear.
As it turns out, coaches early on in Allen’s career weren’t totally on board with him letting it fly as frequently as he did. Allen spoke to Steve Aschburner about his NBA career, and apparently, coaches told him that he didn’t need to “settle” for threes.
“When George Karl came in, we played faster,” Allen said. “And if we had a good shot available, we’d always take it. But early in my career, a lot of my coaches — if you took the 3 — were like, ‘You don’t have to settle. You’re settling.’ Now that’s changed.”
Allen also mentioned that he does not want the league going too far into being three-point heavy, saying “I like to see the big men in the game, to play in the post and play inside-out every now and then. It’s great to see so many shooters, but I don’t want to see bad percentages.”
It’s kind of crazy to think that there was a time when Allen was told he didn’t need to fire away from deep. While he was a really good, versatile scorer early on in his career, he’s always been a sensational shooter, and you’d think coaches would have wanted to highlight that. Still, it’s safe to say things worked out for Allen over the course of his career, even if his coaches didn’t exactly give him the best advice.