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The Heat courted Allen in a big way last summer, after spending years trying to figure out how to stop him as a key part of the Celtics’ title-contending core. And when the decision came that he would leave Boston for Miami, a team that was just coming off the 2012 championship run knew it had just gotten better and deeper _ while the Celtics were more than a little miffed that he would not just leave, but leave for a rival.

“We’re glad that he can sacrifice the way he did and take a lot of criticism as well to come and be a part of an organization, of a team, that he felt was special and that can really use his talents and his ability,” Wade said, referring to the mild backlash that followed Allen’s decision to leave Boston and move to Miami. “And it worked. It worked out for him. He now has another opportunity to play in another finals.”

Allen didn’t start a single game this season, the first time in his career that’s happened. He averaged 10.9 points, a career low, though that’s hardly relevant considering he logged an average of just under 26 minutes, basically a full quarter off his per-game average over his first 16 seasons.

He didn’t come to Miami for numbers. He came to Miami for a second ring.

“Now we’re at the point where we can’t wait,” Allen said. “When you get to the finals, you see what you’re playing for, you can’t wait. You have to start once that ball goes in the air and there has to be an intensity felt from every guy that comes into the game.”

Make no mistake, Allen has been effective for the Heat, even though not all the numbers would suggest so much.

Sure, he’s shooting only 31 percent in his last 10 games, averaging a mere 6.4 points in that span. The most prolific 3-point shooter in NBA history had been 9 of 35 from beyond the arc before making three of his five long-range attempts in the East clincher against Indiana. He has even missed six of his last 16 tries from the foul line, which for Allen constitutes a slump of enormous proportions. But when he’s been on the floor in the playoffs, the Heat have outscored opponents by 130 points.

“It’s a clean slate,” Allen said about getting to the finals. “You have to reconfigure what we’ve been doing offensively and just get that rhythm down and that chemistry and be prepared to fire on all cylinders.”