Although the sharpshooter is ‘a good person to talk to on the phone,’ Kevin Garnett tossed Ray Allen’s digits

http://www.zimbio.com/photos/Ray+Allen/Boston+Celtics+v+Golden+State+Warriors/iibhj5k7XKf

Kevin Garnett has turned his back on Ray Allen.

Miami Heat shooting guard Ray Allen said after practice today that he still considers former teammate Kevin Garnett to be a friend despite the Boston Celtics power forward’s claim to the contrary.

The 6-foot-11, 253 pound Garnett, a 14-time All-Star and four-time All-NBA First Team selection, remains heated that Allen bolted for South Beach in July.

“I don’t have Ray’s number anymore,” said Garnett, 36, a nine-time All-Defensive First Team choice and 2004 Most Valuable Player. “I’m not trying to communicate. I’m just being honest with everybody in here. … It’s just what it is.”

In the summer of 2008, Allen, a 10-time All-Star who is the greatest three-point artist in league history, and Garnett helped lead the Celtics over the Los Angeles Lakers four games to two in a best-of-seven series to capture the fabled franchise’s first Larry O’Brien NBA Championship Trophy since 1986 and its 17th title overall.

The Heat and Celtics have developed a bitter rivalry and Garnett’s livid with Allen’s decision that undoubtedly has Benedict Arnold smirking in his grave.

“That’s a shame,” said Allen, 37, who was named the Sporting News’ “Good Guy” in 2000, 2001 and 2005. “I’m a good person to talk to on the phone. … I’ve been in weird trade situations the last few years. You always felt you had one foot in and one foot out so I can’t worry about it.”

The sharpshooter, who inked a two-year deal with the Heat worth in excess of $6 million, reportedly wearied of teaming with unlikable diva Rajon Rondo and felt like an outcast in the offensive system implemented by Celtics head coach Doc Rivers.

“I don’t know how many miles apart we are, sometimes the translation gets messed up,” said Allen, who was called a “traitor” by bush league New Orleans Hornets guard Jarrett Jack for his controversial choice to vacate Beantown. “We’re friends regardless of what happens. He’s got to do what he’s got to do up in Boston.”

In stark contrast to Allen, Garnett, who was shipped to Boston in 2007 from the Minnesota Timberwolves for Al Jefferson, Sebastian Telfair, Theo Ratliff, Ryan Gomes, Gerald Green, and two first round draft picks, and the Celtics agreed to a three-year contract extension for an estimated $34 million in June.

“The Big Ticket” is a notoriously intense competitor and it’s not surprising he doesn’t “have Ray’s number anymore.”

Whether or not Ray Allen is “a good person to talk to on the phone,” the newest Heat superstar is no longer employed on 100 Legends Way and, therefore, he is now Garnett’s professional rival.

As Kevin Garnett aptly stated, “It’s just what it is.”

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