Stevens: “Al is a very important piece of our team”

The Celtics are determined to prevent Al Horford from leaving for another club again.

The team announced Thursday that the experienced Dominican player has signed a contract extension to continue with Boston.

The deal is for two seasons and $20 million, according to a person close to the deal who requested anonymity to speak to The Associated Press because the Celtics have not yet released the terms of the deal.

“Boston has become my home and my family; My teammates and I continue to strive to help the team win its 18th championship,” Horford said in a statement released by the Celtics.

Horford left the Celtics as a free agent after three seasons when he wrapped up 2018-19 and signed a four-year, $109 million contract with the 76ers.

The Dominican only played one season with Philadelphia and then transferred to Oklahoma City. The Thunder later included him in a trade in the summer of 2021 in which he obtained Kemba Walker and Horford returned to Boston.

Horford was crucial last postseason as the Celtics reached the NBA Finals due to injuries to Rob Williams.

“Al is a very important piece of our team,” Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens said in a statement.

“He is a high-level player who improves the team around him at both ends of the pitch. His work ethic, his commitment to his body and his skill, as well as his generosity are daily examples of how to get big wins in the NBA.”

With Williams sidelined again early in the season after knee surgery, Horford has been solid, averaging 10.3 points and 6.3 boards per game on 55% shooting. field.

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Horford, who has participated in five All-Star Games and played 968 career games (958 starts) in 16 seasons. In this time, he has averaged 13.6 points, 8.1 boards and 3.3 assists, in addition to a 51.5% offensive effectiveness.

The Dominican is one of four active NBA players to accumulate at least 13,000 points, 7,500 boards and 3,000 assists.


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