Al Horford. (Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
BOSTON (WBZ-AM) -- For the first 54 games of the year, Celtics All-Star Al Horford averaged better than 13 points, 7 rebounds, and 5 assists.
"All-Around Al" shot 51 percent from the field and almost 44 percent from 3-point range.
Horford's numbers in five games since the All-Star Break didn't compare--just 7 points, 6 boards, and 3 assists per--on 31 percent shooting.
But he bounced back in last night's blowout of the Bulls.
"You know, the emphasis was really trying to get me the ball, try to get it going, and the guys got me the ball, and I was able to get some good looks early," Horford said.
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He had 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting, along with 7 rebounds.
Was that performance enough to silence his critics who constantly gripe over his max contract?
Of course not, but it's a step in the right direction for a veteran who was injured, sick, or just in a rut, and is necessary to impact winning in more ways than a box score reads or the average fan sees.
The Celts will wrap up their three-game road trip with the rubber game Thursday in Minnesota.
They sit within a game-and-a-half of the Raptors for the East-lead.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030's Adam Kaufman reports