What we know, and can't know

What we know, and can't know
April 6, 2012, 7:57 pm
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It's been two games since Ray Allen rejoined the Celtics, and you already know how I feel about his role in the rotation.

In short, I think Allen should come off the bench. And I hope that Doc continues to use him that way. I'm not sure that he will, but I really hope he does.

They need to see what Bradley and Rondo can do.

But that's all I'll say about it for now. The story's already approaching overkill. Instead, I want to touch on something else that Allen said earlier in the week. Not about starting or coming off the bench, but about being away from the team.

It was a quote from Tuesday afternoon, and the question was: How hard is to sit on the sidelines and watch your teammates go to battle?

"It's kind of mentally draining,'' Allen said. "There is conversation going in the locker room that you're not really a part of. I'm sitting in the locker room watching the games and there is a language being spoken that I'm not a part of. I'm watching the game, but I don't know what's happening."

It's that last part that I found especially interesting: "I'm watching the game, but I don't know what's happening."

I think at some point in every sports writers' career, in every sports fan's life, there comes a time when someone accuses you of not knowing what's going on. There are even more times when you, in actuality, really don't know what's going on.

Sometimes it's a matter of relationships in the locker room or clubhouse. For instance, remember back in Spring Training, when everyone freaked out over Bobby Valentine saying that he thought Mark Melancon did a good job backing up the bases? How we all thought that Bobby V. was being mean-spirited and sarcastic, taking a shot at Melancon's performance, and that the manager was on the verge of losing his team?

We went with that story line for a few days.

And then it turned out he was only joking. That his "backing up the bases" bit was actually an inside joke between the manager and Melancon, and wasn't even close to a big deal.

But we didn't know. Because we're not really there. No one is.

Same goes for the actual games. We media members, sports fans watch these games. We watch them closely, with the advantage of DVR and slow motion replay. We study these games and players and give everything we have just to try and figure out what's going on. What's working. What isn't. What they need to do to be more successful. But the truth is, unless you're there in the the huddles, on the plane, in the locker room or in the field of play you never know exactly what's going on.

There are too many intricacies, conversations and relationships unfolding behind the scenes. There's an entirely different language being spoken. And we can't even hear it.

So here's the question: If Ray Allen's already losing touch after two weeks away, what chance do we have?

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine