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Ray Allen Will Return to Miami Heat for 2013-14 Season

July 1st, 2013 at 12:16 PM
By Ira Luke

'miami heat' photo (c) 2012, stab at sleep - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

A familiar face will be back in the fold next season as Ray Allen has decided to exercise his player option to return to the Miami Heat bench and play a vital role as the team's sixth man.

According to Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, the 17-year veteran "was a very important piece" to what they were able to accomplish during the 2012-13 season. Allen will earn $3.229 million next season by picking up the player option with the Heat for the 2013-14 season. He averaged 10.9 points in 75 regular season games and 10.2 during the playoffs.

There was thoughts as late as Thursday that Allen could opt out and look for a better payday. If he would have opted out, Allen may have requested a bump in salary from $3.23 million to $3.71 million for next year from Miami. But, in the end Allen eventually decided against opting out and took less money from the Heat. His signing help give the Heat some much needed salary cap relief.

Allen was a key part to the success of the 2013 NBA Champion Miami Heat and if it wasn't for him the team could have been watching the San Antonio Spurs celebrate their fifth title at AmericanAirlines Arena. 

Just 11 days after helping the Miami Heat force a Game 7 by hitting a clutch 3-pointer with 5.2 seconds left, Allen called that shot "the biggest" of his career. Two days later, the Heat captured back-to-back championships by defeating the Spurs 95-88 in the final game of the season.

At the end of the day, Allen's return to Miami should prove to be a great decision especially if he can celebrate his 18th year in the NBA with a third championship ring. The Heat organization can do something no team has done since the 1996-98 Chicago Bulls and that's three-peat and with Allen's help, he could prove to be the difference maker he was this season.

Tags: Basketball, Miami, Miami Heat, NBA, Ray Allen

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