Al Horford has been immense for the Boston Celtics in this run to the Finals. He has risen to the occasion time and time again, with the most memorable one so far being Game 4 against the Milwaukee Bucks when he scored 30 points, but he might have just eclipsed that today.
On his NBA Finals debut, the big man showed up to play and helped the Celtics rally from a 12-point deficit heading into the fourth, to a 120-108 victory. He finished with a team-high 26 points with 11 of them coming in just 6 minutes of the fourth quarter as the Celtics took control of the game. Horford's night drew comparisons with LeBron James' legendary performance in Game 6 against the Celtics in the 2012 playoffs as NBA Twitter was full of praise for the big man:
"Al Horford was on that type of time"
"Horford really boutta get a FMVP before curry"
"36 yo horford about to get fmvp over curry, klay, tatum and brown lmao. I’m a fan of neither team but I am rooting hard for big al hahaha"
"He was in his zone 🤣🤣"
"60 year old Al Horford hitting 6 threes in the Finals is really crazy"
"We all though jimmy would do it but we got al horford instead puttin In work on a sorry warriors team."
"2018 finals Lebron = 2022 finals Al Horford"
"Dude just wants his first ring and honestly I couldn’t be more satisfied watching him succeed so far"
"Best win in the entirety of playoffs that the celtics have played so far"
"Warriors will go back and make adjustments but if Celtics stay healthy, I don’t see them losing this series."
"I’m taking him over Tatum"
"Celtics played inspiring basketball tonight, the shot making was on absolute display
"my boy ready for a ring!!!"
"My favorite celtics player Al Horford focused tonight!!!"
"He has a little Kobe in him"
"Finals MVP @AlHorforD @celtics @BillSimmons @ZachLowe_NBA @jj_redick"
It was certainly an epic night for Horford, who stepped up for Jayson Tatum, who wasn't having the best of nights. It sums up what the Celtics have done this postseason, as different guys have contributed big time for them at various points.
Now they go into Game 2 full of confidence, knowing that another win would put them in the driver's seat in the series. Golden State, meanwhile, suddenly finds itself in must-win territory and they'll need to up their game on Sunday night or this much-anticipated series might be done in a hurry.