MIAMI — The Heat will face the Celtics on Monday night. But the Heat won’t face Al Horford.
Horford will not play Monday against Miami for personal reasons. The four-time All-Star is with his family as his wife just gave birth to their second child, according to Adam Himmelsbach from The Boston Globe.
This is a big break for the Heat, as Horford is averaging 14.7 points on 52.4 percent shooting to go with 6.9 rebounds and 5.1 assists in his first season with the Celtics. The 30-year-old signed a four-year, $113 million contract to join Boston as a free agent this past summer.
The Celtics are a different defensive team with Horford on the court. Boston is holding opponents to 40 percent shooting (6.8 percent less than its opponents’ usual shooting percentage) with Horford on the court this season.
Boston is expected to either start Kelly Olynyk or Tyler Zeller in Horford’s place against the Heat.