Allen needs two for the 3-point record

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Allen needs two for the 3-point record

By A. Sherrod Blakely
CSNNE.com

BOSTON Since he came to Boston, Ray Allen has often been viewed as the third cog in Boston's Big Three machine despite being viewed by many as one of the greatest shooters to ever play in the NBA.

Let's face it.

Three is a good number for Allen.

So it's only fitting that it's the 3-point shot that gives Allen his best shot at basketball immortality.

The 6-foot-5 guard's assault on the NBA's record books for 3-pointers made is just about complete.

Against the Bobcats Monday, he needed four more to pass Reggie Miller as the league's all-time leader. He hit two in the Celtics' 94-89 loss in Charlotte, so will have a very good chance at capturing the record when the Lakers visit Boston on Thursday.

Bobcats coach and former Celtics player Paul Silas, was well aware of how close Allen was to achieving the NBA mark for most career 3-pointers made.

"We'll give him three tonight," Silas quipped before the game. "But not four. He's not going to get that record on us. But he'll get it."

Allen has made at least two 3-pointers in each of Boston's last 10 games. During that span, he had four games in which he made three, 3-pointers, and two others in which he connected on four.

"Ray is undoubtedly one of the greatest shooters to ever come through this league," said Silas, who added, "He'll be a Hall of Famer. That's pretty awesome."

Players and coaches who have watched Allen throughout here are unanimous in their belief that his greatness as a shooter in part involves an unparalleled focus on preparation.

"His work ethic is something I try to emulate," Dallas' Jason Terry told CSNNE.com.

Terry, ranked eighth all-time among 3-pointers made, points to Allen and the all-time leader, Reggie Miller, as players he has looked up to.

"We know who the pioneer was for our era; it was Reggie Miller," Terry said. "He set the bar. And now Ray Allen has raised that bar. His longevity, the way he has been able to do it, and for how long he's been doing it for, I want to continue to do that. Once Allen leaves, hopefully I'll just slide right on in."

Before he could get to Allen, he has to pass one of his Mavericks teammates, Jason Kidd, who ranks third all-time.

Kidd's inclusion near the top of the list might seem a bit odd when you consider the big knock on him coming out of college was that he couldn't shoot from the perimeter.

"That would probably be a good trivia question. Who was in the top 3?" Kidd told CSNNE.com. "My name would probably never be mentioned. But I've worked at it, and I'm proud to have made some."

So has Allen, whose date with basketball immortality will be upon us very soon.

And for players like Terry who hope to someday break his record?

Good luck!

Because Allen, even at 35 years of age, has shown no signs of slowing down.

"It's a tribute to all the work that he puts in," said Orlando Magic coach Stan Van Gundy. "He's playing better now than he has the last two years, which to me is incredible. To have him playing the way he is, at his age and as many years as he's been in the league, is incredible. It's a tribute to him and his work ethic."

A. Sherrod Blakely can be reached at sblakely@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Sherrod on Twitter at http:twitter.comsherrodbcsn

Crowder on Cousins' style: 'Step up to the test or you get run over'

Crowder on Cousins' style: 'Step up to the test or you get run over'

BOSTON – There was a point in the fourth quarter when Sacramento's DeMarcus Cousins was fouled trying to score which brought about an automatic, intense and angry scowl from the all-star center. 

He raised his hand as he were going to strike back at the potential assailant. 

And then he saw the man was Jae Crowder. 

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Cousins, who had a game-high 28 points, then went to the free throw line, incident-free. 

“I’m not one those other cats he be punking,” said Crowder with a grin.

That moment was one of many throughout Friday night’s game when Crowder made his presence felt when the game mattered most, and wasn’t afraid to mix it up with whoever stood between him and helping the Celtics win – even Cousins. 

But as Crowder explained following Boston’s 97-92 win, that moment was about two physical players who have developed an on-the-floor rapport that speaks to their intensity and desire to win at all costs. 

“He’s going to bring the game to you; his physicality,” said Crowder who had 16 points on 6-for-12 shooting. “He’s a very physical type of guy. If he senses you’re not physical at all, he’ll let you know. He’s a dog down there; he’s a bull. I love to go against a player like that. He’s going to give you his best shot each and every night. You either step up to the test or you get run over.” 

As soon as the two made eye contact, Crowder knew it was one of the many intimidation methods used by Cousins against opposing players. 

Crowder wasn’t having it. 

“That’s my guy; he’s my guy,” Crowder said of Cousins. “He plays a lot of tactics against a lot of other players. I’ve earned that respect with him. He knows I’m going to fight him just as hard as anybody else. We leave it on the court. He’s a good friend of mine. We’ve become friends, just playing ball, playing basketball the right way.”