It was anything but a king's welcome, but that didn't mean Ray Allen's return to the TD Garden was completely bereft of sentimentality.
One of the biggest story lines surrounding Allen's first game back in Boston since signing with the Miami Heat was how the former Celtics sharpshooter would be received by fans on his old home floor.
Thanks to a tribute put together by the Celtics, the crowd's reaction to Allen in a Heat jersey was mixed to start. During a timeout in the first quarter, a video on the TD Garden Jumbotron showed clips of some of Allen's best moments as a member of the Celtics. The crowd booed at first, but the boos turned to cheers as the highlights continued. By the end, it appeared as though a significant portion of those in attendance gave Allen a polite ovation.
But, in terms of niceties, that was it.
When Allen checked into the game later in the first quarter, he was met with a healthy does of boos. The first time he caught the ball, the boos were louder. And when he got to the free throw line in the second quarter, he was booed loudly and lustily. When he missed the first of two freebies, the crowd was overjoyed.
Today, with the Heat in town, and with the Celtics in the middle of a six-game losing streak, fans at TD Garden are rooting for laundry over anything else -- and Allen's wearing the wrong kind.