When the Celtics traded for Kristaps Porzingis in the offseason, Al Horford’s role was reduced with Boston.

Compared to 63 starts last season, Horford has started in just 31 games for Boston. Despite the reduced role, the 37-year-old veteran’s stats haven’t diminished.

Horford is averaging 8.6 points, 6.5 rebounds and 2.6 assists in 27.2 minutes per game. Not only is Horford producing when called upon to start when Porzingis is out of the lineup or coming in off the bench, the C’s are 32-2 this season when he scores at least eight points, including 20 consecutive games, according to NBC Sports Boston’s Celtics statistician and researcher Dick Lipe.

With stars like Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Porzingis, Jrue Holiday and Derrick White, Horford is far from the Celtics’ best player, but his role on and off the court has been immeasurable in the quest to capture his first title and the team’s 18th championship.

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His continued production and valuable leadership are not lost on his teammates and even with the best starting lineup in the league, the Celtics will need to lean on Horford throughout the postseason.

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Horford was named as a finalist for the 2023-24 Twyman-Stokes Teammate of the Year Award. The annual honor recognizes the player deemed to be the best teammate based on selfless play, on and off the court. The recipient is seen as a mentor and role model to other NBA players, along with commitment and dedication to the team.

The Celtics big man joins Kings’ Harrison Barnes, Nets’ Mikal Bridges, Knicks’ Jalen Brunson, Nuggets’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Timberwolves’ Mike Conley, Magic’s Markelle Fultz, Pacers’ T.J. McConnell, Pelicans’ Larry Nance Jr., Cavaliers’ Geroge Niang, Mavericks’ Dwight Powell and Thunder’s Jalen Williams. The winner will be selected by current NBA players.

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Featured image via Jim Dedmon/USA TODAY Sports Images