What Horford Means to the Hawks

  • Added:
    Dec 29, 2013
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What Horford Means to the Hawks Photo by Lemmy Morrie

After a surprisingly good start to the season which many believed to be a rebuilding period for the team, the Atlanta Hawks are facing a very tough challenge with the lost of Al Horford due to an injury he suffered during the game against the Cleveland Cavalier on December 26. The injury as reported and confirmed by the team is a torn right pectoral muscle. There is no timetable for his recovery and return, leaving the Hawks without their best player so far this season. In light of the injury, a question that has surfaced revolves around his importance to the success of the team and what would happen without him.

His Perceived Value

This is an interesting issue due to the fact that Horford was mentioned in some trade scenarios during the off-season. With the Hawks opting to not let go of Josh Smith, the team's best player at that time, it seemed like the they were willing to blow the team up and go for a total rebuild from scratch. However, there was never a trade attractive enough for the management to trade him away.

Still, the fact that he was mentioned in such situations kind of reflected how he was valued by the team. However, since the start of the season, Horford has already shown that he can be a very valuable piece not only right now but also in the future.

His Contributions

He has been averaging 18.6 points and 8.4 rebounds. Replacing those numbers is already going to be a tough task for the remaining team, but there is something more important the team is going to be missing with the absence of Horford.

He is a solid force in the interior on defense. With him being out, the interior protection of the team is going to take a huge dip. On the offensive end, his size and skills make him a player that the opposing team has to always pay attention to which makes him a valuable piece to various offensive sets that the Hawks are running right now.

Post-Season Prediction

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that the absence of Horford is going to have negative effect on the team. The real question here is how worse are they going to be. Some are saying that they could miss the playoffs, but with how bad the eastern conference are right now, I just don't see that happening. The way I see it, the Hawks are still going to play in the post-season, but with their consistency taking a hit, they could drop to the 6th seed when the playoffs roll out.

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