Ray Allen chooses to sign with Miami Heat
Boston Celtics' Ray Allen (20) and Paul Pierce (34) look up at the scoreboard as the Celtics fall behind the Miami Heat during the second half of Game 7 of the NBA playoffs Eastern Conference finals, Saturday, June 9, 2012, in Miami. Miami won 101-88. / Lynne Sladky
(AP) MIAMI - Ray Allen will take less money for a chance at another NBA championship.
Allen told the Miami Heat on Friday night that he intends to accept their contract offer and leave Boston after five seasons, even though the Celtics could pay him about twice as much as the reigning NBA champions will be able to next season. Miami could only offer Allen the mini mid-level, worth about $3 million for next season.
Heat owner Micky Arison tweeted the news just after 9:30 p.m. or about 2:30 a.m. Saturday in Europe, where Arison has been for several days.
"I was just woken up with great news," Arison wrote. "Welcome to the family (hash)20."
Arison got the word from Heat President Pat Riley, who made Allen the team's top free-agent priority, especially in recent days. Allen arrived in Miami on Thursday for a visit, went to dinner with Riley, coach Erik Spoelstra, team executive Alonzo Mourning and others Thursday night, then left Friday to presumably decide his future.
Hours later, the choice was made. Allen's agent, James Tanner, confirmed the decision to The Associated Press not long after Arison's tweet.
Allen cannot officially sign until Wednesday because of the league's moratorium.
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