Horford Wins NBA Weekly Honor, And It Was Well Deserved

Monday, November 26, 2012
By Micah Hart

When Joe Johnson was traded to the Nets during the offseason, one of the first questions fans would ask was, “Who will become the team’s #1 offensive option?”

The answer to that question, so far, is, it depends. It’s one of the strengths of this team that there are so many players who can fill that role.

But if there is one thing we’ve heard people clamor for in the past, it’s been more touches for Al Horford. Those increased touches are coming this season for Big Al, and his performance so far shows it is worth it, as Horford was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week Monday after leading the Hawks to a 4-0 record the past seven days.

Horford is being more involved in the Hawks’ offense this season than ever before, and making the most of it. His usage rate is a career-high 19.4 (basically the number of possessions a player uses per 40 minutes), after averaging 16.4 in his first five seasons. The extra involvement has led to a career-best 17.8 P/40 (points per 40 minutes), and that’s even taking into consideration that Al’s free throwing shooting has been strangely erratic early on, costing him a healthy amount of otherwise free points.

When the NBA announced a move to a 2-guard 3-big voting set up for the All-Star Game (Have you voted yet?), there were some who thought the change might negatively impact Horford’s chances of making the team. Leaving out that he’s always been a coach’s addition, it stands to reason his increased production should take the elimination of a required center contingent out of the equation.

Yes all in in all, a pretty terrific week for the Horford clan.