Ray Allen has a treasure trove of accomplishments in his 17 seasons in the NBA.
Not only is Allen a world champion, but he is also the league record-holder for three-point shots and makes.
He also starred in a Spike Lee movie not long after leaving UConn.
So when another milestone comes, Allen takes it in stride.
“You never go into and say, ‘This is something I want to accomplish,’ ’’ Allen said before Monday night’s Heat game in which he scored 15 points to eclipse the 23,000 mark.
“The big thing for me is being healthy. That means you can play longer. Then you look at the things you have accrued on the court, the friends and family you make off the court. You just want to be available to play — and then you end up with a nice career.’’
Allen needed 12 points to hit 23,000. When told that before the game, Allen smiled. “That’s all I got?’’ he said. “Guess I need to work a little harder.’’
Allen, who played Jesus Shuttlesworth alongside Denzel Washington in Lee’s He Got Game, is just the fourth active player to hit the 23K mark as he continues to move up the all-time scoring list.
With his points Monday, Allen is 146 behind Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor for 23rd all time. Kobe Bryant came into Monday fifth on the all-time scoring list with 29,591 points. Kevin Garnett and Dirk Nowitzki are the other active players with more points than Allen.
Former Boston teammate Paul Pierce is fifth on the active list behind Allen with 22,652 points.
For Allen, hearing names like Baylor and others he has passed or is in the same rarified neighborhood makes the milestones more personal.
Even though Allen hasn’t played against or alongside many of those he hangs with in the record books, these are players he grew up watching and respecting.
“When you say 23,000 points, you know what has the biggest affect? How you did it, who is ahead of you,’’ said Allen, who has hit 12 of 20 three-pointers in four games with the Heat this season.
“A lot of the guys I have passed, I grew up watching. I was a fan of those guys growing up. So to be on that list with them and to pass them, it’s like, ‘Wow.’ I just have to stay focused, stay healthy. Because there so much more I can do. You may slow down as you get older. But you don’t have to.’’
Allen’s work ethic is well documented, a big reason he’s still going strong at 37.
Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said Monday that he has been admiring Allen from afar for some time, recalling watching Allen work hours before tip-off back when he played for the Seattle SuperSonics from 2003 to 2007.
Spoelstra, as a young Heat assistant coach, would be on the first bus from the Heat hotel to the visiting arena so he would get there early enough to catch Allen’s pregame routine — one that continues to this day.
“You would immediately see Ray Allen out there shooting 3 1/2 to four hours before a game,’’ Spoelstra said.
“That routine hasn’t changed. His skill of shooting is not by accident.’’
Spoelstra added that he has used Allen’s hard work as an example to his Heat payers before Allen’s arrival.
Spoelstra said he gave everyone on the team a copy of an article on Allen’s work ethic, one that dealt with his “commitment to nutrition.’’
“It is no accident he is able to play the game at a high level at 37,’’ Spoelstra said. “He is a very young 37.’’
Said Allen: “There is a bar set, and you don’t want to diminish your abilities. When you start saying I’m so-and-so years old, you try to do what that age is expected to do. I try not to put a cap on what I can do. You can diminish the quality of who you are by doing that.’’