Ray Allen announced his retirement today, officially ending an 18-year career in which he shot 40 percent from deep, solidifying his status as one of the greatest long-range threats of all time. It’s no coincidence, then, that one of his 3-pointers will live on as the most iconic shot of Allen’s career. In the waning seconds of Game 6 of the 2013 NBA Finals, with the Heat down 3-2 to the San Antonio Spurs, Allen drained a trey with 5 seconds left to finish off a rabid Heat comeback and tie the game at 95. The Heat won that game, and Game 7, to capture their second straight NBA championship.
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In a letter he wrote to The Player’s Tribune announcing his retirement, Allen says he celebrated until about 5 in the morning after Game 7 before finally crawling into bed. But he couldn’t sleep. So he did the only logical thing left to do: he drove to the dentist.
Around 7:30, you get into your car and go for a drive.
You park your car in front of a white office building. They’re just opening up.
When you walk in the door, the receptionist looks at you and says, “Ray? What … what are you doing here?”
“I couldn’t sleep.”
“But … you just won the title.”
“Yeah, I just wanted to get out of the house.”
“But … it’s eight in the morning. And you just won the title.”
“Well, I still got some work to be done on this tooth. Is he in?”
Your dentist walks out of his office.
“Ray? What are you … what?”
This is what success looks like for you. You’re the kind of guy who goes to the dentist the morning after winning an NBA title.
Celebrating an NBA championship by sitting with your mouth open for an hour sounds like the worst thing possible, but Allen has always been a different dude. He says he doesn’t drink, go out much or even play cards with his teammates on the team plane, an NBA tradition. But hey, to each his own. Allen’s got two shiny rings to show off, and if having a dentist work on a troublesome pearly white is his way of celebrating, then so be it.