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Dwight Howard exits game with left quad contusion

The Hawks might be dealing with their first significant injury of the season.

NBA: Philadelphia 76ers at Atlanta Hawks Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Dwight Howard has excelled since arriving in Atlanta, but on Tuesday evening in Miami, the standout center may have encountered his first road block as a member of the Hawks organization. Howard was whisked to the locker room during the third quarter with an apparent injury and, moments later, it was announced that he suffered a left quad contusion that would end his evening early.

Prior to exiting the game, Howard played 25 minutes, scoring 11 points, grabbing 11 rebounds and generating three steals. Though he was outrebounded by Miami’s Hassan Whiteside, Howard was performing well (aside from a technical foul moments before the injury) and, hopefully, this will not be an injury that plagues Howard beyond this game against the Heat.

With that said, the Hawks do encounter a back-to-back on Wednesday, as Atlanta will take on the Milwaukee Bucks at home in less than 24 hours. Howard’s status for that game will be updated as appropriate, but for now, the Hawks must hope that their best center will be available sooner rather than later.

Stay tuned.