Ray Allen expressed concern Wednesday night for Celtics rookies JaJuan Johnson and E'Twaun Moore, who could enter the league without a training camp.
If the NBA lockout extends into the regular season, it could be tough for either to find playing time. As was the case with the 1998-99 lockout-shortened season, teams end up focusing more on winning than integrating young players.
"You start so far behind the eight ball, because when we started we had back-to-back-to-backs -- 50 games in such a compacted season -- it was overwhelming for all of us," said Allen.
Still, the Big 3 needs to keep in touch with Johnson and Moore during the lockout; not so much to ensure proper conditioning, but to inform them of expectations. And to give them peers to which they can turn while communication with the Celtics organization is outlawed.
"The responsibility is going to be definitely me, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett to make sure that everybody's somewhere where you're being touched, where you know that we're trying to institute what we want as far as a team is concerned and those guys know kind of what direction we want to head in," said Allen.
Beyond the rookies, the Celtics have open roster spots which can't be filled during the lockout, amplifying the issue of chemistry building from the players' perspective.