It was great to see Ray Allen get his shot back tonight and help the team pick up the huge Game 5 win. The Pistons pushed them as far as possible to the edge tonight (and could still push further on Fri) and the Celtics battled and persevered for the win, that says a lot about the character of the players on the team.

Back to Ray Allen, ever since the Atlanta series, he has been in a major funk. For a guy that averaged 17+ points all year, and 20+ when he was the main scorer in Sea and Mil, his past 12 playoff games have been subpar in comparison,

Date Opponent/Score Pct Pts
May 26 @ DET L 75-94 2-for-8 25.0 11
May 24 @ DET W 94-80 5-for-16 31.3 14
May 22 DET L 97-103 9-for-16 56.3 25
May 20 DET W 88-79 3-for-10 30.0 9
May 18 CLE W 97-92 1-for-6 16.7 4
May 16 @ CLE L 69-74 3-for-8 37.5 9
May 14 CLE W 96-89 4-for-11 36.4 11
May 12 @ CLE L 77-88 4-for-10 40.0 15
May 10 @ CLE L 84-108 4-for-12 33.3 10
May 8 CLE W 89-73 4-for-10 40.0 16
May 6 CLE W 76-72 0-for-4 0.0 0

Take note especially of his FT%, for a career 44% shooter, he's only been higher than that once. Well, here are 3 big 3 pointers that Ray hit in the 2nd half as well as his post-game interview with ESPN's Michelle Tafoya,

When you're a shooter like Ray, the only way out of a shooting slump (and all shooters get them), is too continue shooting the ball. I was talking to a coaching friend of mine and we laughed how Ray's struggles reminded us of a kid we coached, that also went through a shooting slump. Keep shooting, and your shot will come...

Ray Allen's Jump Shot:

A few higher quality pictures of Ray Allen's great jump shot. Unlike some other 3-point shooters like Brent Barry who shoot a set shot, Ray is a jump shooter. What that means is that he can often shoot over people by getting lift before his release, but it also means that he won't be as effective with it as he gets older. A guy like Brent can play well past his 40s because his set shot won't impact his knees like Ray's will. Anyways, here are a couple of shots of Ray shooting over Rip and Rasheed (click on pics for the high res pictures),

Here is a nice picture of Ray's jump shot at the height of his ascent getting ready to flick his wrists,

I find that watching Ray's shot is like watching a great artist perform. His shot is timeless, he moves so effortlessly in the air.


The Celtics got big contributions outside of its big 3, which will continue to be the main theme, can Perkins and Rondo continue to play well through this and the next series if they advance? You can't fault the Pistons effort tonight. They came out and played, competed. they just got beat by better offense.

If you're looking for some more skill development stuff, shooting drills, etc..., take a look at Tom Crean's new DVD on Dynamic Skills which has some stuff on post skills and post-entry. Coach Crean of course is the new head coach for Indiana University. As always, be sure to check out the X's and O's of Basketball Forum to discuss this and more of your favorite basketball topics.