The Atlanta Hawks suffered a far more devastating loss on Wednesday night than the club’s losing to the Indiana Pacers by a final score of 96-84; according to a report from the “Atlanta Journal Constitution” they will be without center Al Horford after he injured his shoulder early in the game. The two-time All-Star could miss up to four months after he tore his left pectoral muscle in the first quarter against the Pacers. The paper has reported that the 25-year-old big man will have a second opinion before he agrees to have surgery.
Horford has been a key member of the nucleus that turned around the fortunes of the Atlanta franchise; as they have evolved from one of the weaker teams in the Association to a Playoff contender over the last four seasons. Horford has averaged 12.4 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.3 assists this season helping the Hawks attain a 7-4 record heading into Thursday night’s game against the Charlotte Bobcats. The team has no other center near the caliber of Horford on the roster with Zaza Pachulia and Jason Collins being their only options at this point.
The co-owner of the club Michael Gearon Jr. expressed the feelings of the team. He said “It’s disappointing news. Al is a big part of our success. Hopefully he will be back by the playoffs. The tough part is we have been playing hard and playing well. We will have to try to get through it. We’re a veteran team and we have to find a way.”
If Horford is able to return to action in four months it would be just the start of the Post Season. The Hawks last contest of the regular season is on April 26.