The Atlanta Hawks may not have to worry about dealing with Dwight Howard on Friday night because of the All-Star Center's sore back.
Dwight Howard said he was hurting in practice today and probably will not play tomorrow against the #Hawks.— Josh Robbins (@JoshuaBRobbins) April 12, 2012
Atlanta is currently tied with the Magic with 34-24 records but the Hawks hold the tie-breaker in the season series. If the playoffs began today the Hawks would play the Boston Celtics while the Magic would take on the Indiana Pacers. The Hawks have won both meetings with the Magic this season.
Howard sat out the Magic's loss on Tuesday to the Orlando Magic. It was thought then that he would miss at least two games but with two straight off days there was a chance he could play. Could also mean that the Magic are happy being the sixth seed and getting the Pacers and aren't looking to move up where they would take on Boston.
Here is a quote from Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinal in his blog regarding the Magic, injuries and the playoffs.
Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said after Thursday's practice that the most important things for his team are health, clinching a spot and playoff seeding "in that order."