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Mike Budenholzer releases statement on Al Horford's departure

The Hawks' head man had some words for their departing All-Star.

Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Hawks lost out of starting center Al Horford to free agency this offseason, and the move has been a tough one to swallow for many.

Friday afternoon, Hawks head coach Mike Budenholzer released the following statement:

"On behalf of the Hawks organization, I would like to thank Al Horford for his many contributions on the court and in the community. He was an integral part of one of the most successful runs in franchise history, including nine straight playoff appearances after his arrival. The character he displayed on the court, in the locker room, and in the community gave our entire organization and city a leader that embodied unselfishness and professionalism.
We respect Al's decision and are grateful for his nine years with our organization and community."

It's an unfortunate split, but hopefully the Atlanta Hawks and Al Horford become better for it in the long run.

We wish the best of luck to Al moving forward.