Monday, February 02, 2009

Al Horford Returns to Practice

If everything goes well, Sekou Smith reports, he could return to action Wednesday night in Minnesota:
Woodson said to expect something along the lines of the four minutes per quarter that Milwaukee is deploying Andrew Bogut as he returns from a six-game absence with a sore back.
Al Horford:
"I felt really good. What I was concerned about was playing against contact. And I was fine. I think [Hawks assistant coach for player performance] Pete [Radulovic] and [head athletic trainer] Wally [Blase] did a great job of getting me back healthy, so I’m happy."
Marvin Williams:
"He looked good to me. Real good. It was definitely good to see him back out there."
Mike Woodson on Horford's return:
"I don’t think you can bring him back and play him big minutes. You’ve got to ease him back in. And most players like him, they don’t like that. It’s what we have to do. We can’t afford to rush him back and risk anything else going wrong."
Woodson on Horford's absence:
"But with him being out, you miss all the little things he does. He sets screens. He plugs it up defensively. He’s our best rebounder, the loose balls he always comes up with, the big blocks. He can do it all. We just can’t rush it."
Josh Smith:
"It’s definitely a big boost to have him coming back. We’ve missed his toughness."

"He just adds that extra toughness that we need in the paint. He helps me out a whole lot defending the paint and clogging up the lane with all the rebounds and blocked shots. He’s a nuisance on those offensive boards. So we’d love to have him back for however many minutes he can stand it right now."

1 comment:

Unknown said...

That's great news. Hopefully he can get up to speed quickly and get back to playing his normal minutes again.

I don't think I ever really fully appreciated his around the basket game until he went out. It's so nice having someone who can convert a high percentage of shots from that area with literally no danger of him falling in love with his outside shot. Also, he was leading the team in blocks and rebounds before he went out, so that will be nice to have back as well.

The key for us at the beginning of the season was that we didn't need to have a "superhuman" performance by anyone to win games. Hopefully this will allow us to get back to the point where we can still win games without needing at least 30 points from Joe, 5 threes from Bibby, and 20 points from Flip every night...