Dwight Howard Injury: Hawks Star Ruled Out vs. Thunder Due to Back Tightness

December 19th, 2016 by Scott Polacek Leave a reply »

Atlanta Hawks big man Dwight Howard will not play in Monday's game against the Oklahoma City Thunder because of back tightness, per David Aldridge of NBA.com.

Despite an impressive career, physical ailments are nothing new for Howard. He suffered a quad injury earlier in the season, and he has dealt with back injuries throughout his NBA tenure. He even underwent season-ending back surgery in 2012.

When healthy, Howard is a primary piece in Atlanta's frontcourt rotation. In his first season with the team, he is averaging 14.2 points, 13.0 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game as a double-double threat and the primary anchor for the Hawks' interior defense on a nightly basis.

While he still struggles at the free-throw line (52.4 percent), Howard has made 63.2 percent of his field-goal attempts this season, which would be the highest mark of his career if he maintained it.

The 31-year-old is no longer in his prime, but he is an eight-time All-Star, three-time Defensive Player of the Year and five-time member of the NBA All-Defensive team, not to mention that he is one reason the Hawks are battling for early positioning ...

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