Sports Illustrated has been counting down the top 100 players in the NBA for the 2015-2016 season, and the Atlanta Hawks have been prominently involved with Tiago Splitter, Kyle Korver, Jeff Teague and Paul Millsap (in that order) making the cut. On Wednesday, SI released the players ranked between 30 and 11 on the overall list, and Hawks big man Al Horford made the cut, coming in at number 21.
Here is what the panel had to say about Horford in placing him between Chris Bosh and Paul George on the list:
Some NBA teams play in a way that’s fast and free, others in a way that’s slow and structured. All could make great use of Al Horford, a terrific big man whose game knows no stylistic bounds. Versatility comes naturally for a player who does almost everything well; ask Horford to spread the floor, defend in space, post up, hit the glass, set screens, facilitate offense, wall off the rim, work the baseline, or run the floor and you’ll get the same blanket capability. To call him a ‘jack of all trades’ undersells the point. Horford is so balanced as a player he’s virtually without weakness—an amazing resource for the purposes of team building.
It is always encouraging to see a player like Horford receive the respect he deserves from a national platform, and this rankings feels appropriate. He isn't a superstar of the highest order, but the All-Star center remains one of the best and most efficient big men in the NBA while operating as Atlanta's best player.