It's been said dissent is the highest form of patriotism. If you believe that line of thinking, this ballplayer is the most patriotic star in the NBA.
Ray Allen thinks professional basketball stars who spend their time during the summer representing the United States overseas should be paid.
"You talk about the patriotism that guys should want to play for, but you (need to) find a way to entice the guys," Allen told Fox Sports Florida.
To begin with, Allen says players' bodies need more of a break to recover from the grueling NBA schedule. The two or three weeks stars get after long playoff runs just isn't enough. Moreover, Allen feels financially it doesn't make sense for stars to work for free.
"Everybody says, 'Play for your country.' But (NBA players are) commodities, your businesses," Allen said. "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 opportunities, 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."
As an example Allen believes that NBA stars deserve a cut of merchandise profits.
"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."
The Boston Celtics star was asked about teammate Rajon Rondo having no interest in playing in the Olympics.
Allen has first hand knowledge of the process, he was a member of the gold medal winning 2000 Olympics. Incidentally, every American athlete is paid $25,000 for gold, $15,000 for silver and $10k for a bronze medal by the U.S. Olympic Committee.
Follow Ben Maller on Twitter @BenMaller.