One is a 60-year-old, easily excitable, frequently crazed, naturally emotional basketball coach. The other is a 23-year-old, not so easily excitable, rarely (if ever) crazed, naturally laid-back basketball player.
“Everybody doesn’t have my personality, like let’s go kill somebody. They just don’t,” Collins said. “Some guys are just lower key, but that doesn’t mean they are less of a competitor. I am getting better with that. I’m 60 and maybe at 62 I’ll understand that, but I am getting better.
“[Lavoy] has a very calm personality, so you can not get lost in that demeanor and think that motor isn’t running because the other day he was one of the most active guys on the floor for us. He’s been great for us.”
Through two playoff games, Allen is averaging 7.5 points and 7.5 rebounds in 23 minutes per game. Perhaps most importantly for a team who's coach stresses defense, Allen has proved up to the task defending the low post, holding his position when getting bodied by the likes of Carlos Boozer, Joakim Noah and Omer Asik.
"I've been hearing that since high school, so it's not a surprise," Allen said. "My opinion about…I don't pay too much attention, you know, to what people say. I just pay attention to, like…at the time, I was listening to what the NBA scouts were saying and listening to them. I wasn't really worried about what the public opinion was. And right now the only opinion I'm really worried about is what coach Collins and his assistants think."
On such assistant, Jeff Capel, recently pulled Allen aside, and according to Lynam's story, and compared the rookie to another A-10 product in two-time NBA All-Star David West, insisting that Lavoy could be similarly successful.
“I just want one Lavoy Allen day, just one in my life,” Collins said chuckling. “Where you walk around and you don’t have a care in the world. I’m not greedy I just want one."
Not bad for a second round draft pick who was never going to make it.