Al Horford for the 1st time in his career came off the bench last night. Being the ultimate competitor, leader, and willing to win at all cost, Al sacrificed his ego for the team. Brett Brown stated, “he and Al had a grown man conversation.” With the Addition of Alec Burks and GR3, the decision was the right decision. It made it easier to slide one of the wings into the starting lineup without effecting bench scoring. As a result, yesterday’s game against the Clippers was the best spacing we’ve seen all season.
Al finished the game with 9 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 assist, along with a key block on Paul George. However, the box score didn’t tell the real story. He was active around the rim, looked more engaged offensively and made some really nice passes to Embiid as a high-low passer. He became the focal point of the offense being the post player on the floor with Embiid on the bench. The second unit is now as strong as ever with Horford, GR3, Alec Burks, and Thybulle. Its a great mixture of offense and defense barring Korkmaz continues in the starting lineup.
All in all, Sixers fans have to commend Al Horford for sacrificing for the team. Some might frown upon his contract, but he can still have a huge impact such as Serge Ibaka for the Toronto Raptors does as the first big off the bench. He will be a huge part of the team come playoff time, especially, his role in the 4th quarter. For example, Horford’s great defense while guarding the Clippers Marcus Morris late in the game helped seal a statement game heading into the All star break. Lets see what Brett decides to do after the break.