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Al Horford's free agency was fascinating this summer because he was a seamless fit for pretty much every suitor.

By Rob Mahoney
September 14, 2016

Part of what made Horford’s free agency so fascinating this summer was that his game could apply so well to so many different systems and team constructions. If Boston hadn’t worked out, Detroit, Golden State, Oklahoma City, Atlanta, Washington, Portland, Toronto, San Antonio, Indiana, or Houston all would have made good sense. Others, too, would have been viable were those teams not otherwise committed to quality frontcourt players. Finding Horford a home within is essentially as simple as allocating him minutes at either frontcourt spot and shaping his role to fit whatever it is the team might need. The essence of his game is facilitation. Horford can post, guard, space, rotate, cut, pass, switch, screen, rebound, and pop to whatever degree makes sense and succeed in all areas. He can spend his time on the low block, the elbow, the top of the key, or the baseline depending on what openings are available, and he can either play up when defending a pick-and-roll or drop back as the system demands. Horford will shoot better than 50% from the field and rarely turn the ball over, regardless, closing the loop one of the most comprehensive skill sets in the NBA. If you still aren’t under the impression that Horford is a genuine star, you have a lot of homework to do. (Last year: No. 21)

+ Exceptional passer who could run an offense from the high post
+ Quality positional defender who understands how to track opponents in space
Experiences some rebounding troubles against bigger centers
Dabbled with a three-point shot last season but hasn’t yet hit a league-average %

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