Ray Allen hit the biggest shot of his career, as you know, forcing Game 6 of the NBA Finals to OT, where his team, the Heat, won to stave off elimination.
Here are some excerpts from Allen’s post-game press conference in Miami, Tuesday night, as transcribed by ASAP Sports:
On how the play unfolded:
Well, LeBron took the shot, and I knew we had time, I had to go I went into the paint to try to get the ball and make something happen. At that point there’s no guarantee who is going to get the ball or what may happen. And when I seen CB get the ball, I just backpedaled right to the three point line, and I was hoping I was where I needed to be. But I wasn’t quite sure. But just from years of shooting, I got to my spot.
… It’s going to be a shot that I’m going to remember for a long time. There’s a lot of shots that I’ve made in my career, but this will go high up in the ranks because of the situation. Just the way that whole last minute and a half unfolded, it wasn’t looking good for us. But we’ve been resilient all year. We’ve been down in situations, we’ve come back and won games. We never give up. Just being able to be in that situation where the ball bounced in our direction. You know, we’ve been a part of many plays where the ball has a funky bounce to it. And I’ve known my whole career sometimes you just get lucky. When you win championships, it involves a little luck. That right there was luck shining on our side.
… It’s tough, but believe it or not, I work on it quite often. I try to put my body in precarious situations coming from different parts of the floor, different angles to try to get my momentum going moving forward. I honestly can say I gave myself a great opportunity, a great chance to make that shot. And it wasn’t unfamiliar to me positionally. When it went in, I was ecstatic. But at the same time I was expecting to make it. Whether CB threw me the ball or not, I had to get myself in a position where I was ready. Once the ball came off the rim, I just knew get to the three point line. We need a three. Two points isn’t going to cut it. So my mental checklist is really to have my legs ready and underneath me, so when the ball comes, if it comes, I was ready to go in the air. So that’s pretty much once I get my legs there, I let the ball go. I’m going to give myself the best chance to make it. “
Is this his defining moment?
” I don’t think that’s up to me to decide. Anybody who will talk about me when I’m away from this game is going to talk about my impact on the game. They’ll talk about plays that I’ve made, shots I’ve made, games I’ve won. That will be up to the particular individual. But I think it depends who you talk to.”
On leaving Celtics behind, etc
… Well, my focus has been here to help this team win. When I parted ways with Boston, it was they went in their direction and obviously I went in mine. The minute I got here, this team made me feel welcome. I didn’t win last year with this team, but they made me feel a part of it. So the redemption has been winning 66 games this year, and having the best record in the NBA, making it to the playoffs and getting to this point, and being with a great group of guys. I have had a great year off the floor with them. As a team we’ve all bonded. Camaraderie is awesome. We put ourselves in the situation we’re in. And good or bad, we’re all going to fight to try to make it to the top.
On Game 7:
Definitely feels incredible. The last Game 7 I was a part of, you know, you felt there was just a thickness in the air where everything seemed like it was against you. We even had a lead coming into the fourth quarter, and we just ran out of gas. That’s where when you play in front of your home building, it gives you so much momentum. That’s what happened tonight, playing in front of our fans. They gave us that momentum and that energy coming down in the fourth quarter. And we’re going to look to feed off that same energy in Game 7. We have to have a great start. We have to end our quarters well and definitely come with that mindset.