Today must be national “Boston Celtics, how do you feel about the Olympics?” Day. Earlier, we gave you Rondo’s take on why he doesn’t want to play in the Olympics, and now Ray Allen gives his view.
“You talk about the patriotism that guys should want to play for, but you (need to) find a way to entice the guys,” Allen said. “It’s not the easiest thing in the world if you play deep in the playoffs and then you get two, three weeks off and then you start training again to play more basketball where it requires you to be away from home and in another country. It’s fun, but your body does need a break.
“Everybody says, ‘Play for your country.’ But (NBA players are) commodities, your businesses. You think about it, you do camps in the summer, you have various opportunities to make money. When you go overseas and play basketball, you lose those opportunties, what you may make… If I’m an accountant and I get outsourced by my firm, I’m going to make some money somewhere else.”
The U.S. Olympic Committee does provide every American with $25,000 for winning a gold medal, $15,000 for a silver and $10,000 for a bronze. But Allen, while not specifying an amount, has a way he believes could result in Team USA players drawing a fair salary.
“If it’s licensing,” Allen said. “(The players) are wearing jerseys and (others, but not the players, are) making money off it. Something (should be done) just to say to the guys, ‘Hey, you guys are spending this much time, 40 days, playing basketball, we’re paying for some type service that you provide, that you’re getting some kind of kickback’… I know that you sell unlimited jerseys so I think the players should get some piece of that.”