A lot has changed since Al Horford last donned a Boston Celtics uniform.
Since Horford left for the Philadelphia 76ers in 2019, Jayson Tatum has evolved into one of the game's premier talents while Jaylen Brown has taken the leap to All-Star status. Now that he's back in Boston, Horford will get to play alongside the duo as they look to show improvement again in 2021-22.
He caught up with our Chris Forsberg on a brand new episode of the Celtics Talk Podcast to discuss Tatum and Brown's development. and what he expects from them this upcoming season.
"It's just been impressive how quickly they've been able to develop," Horford said. "Offensively, their fluidity, their comfort level and just their confidence has gone through the roof.
"For me, it's just really trying to facilitate things for them. They have abilities to be able to score on their own and things like that but the easier the baskets we can get, the more we can get to not having to rely so heavily on them all the time and have good balance and good ball movement. Those are things that are important, so helping them grow in those areas I think is gonna make them better players and make our team better."
Horford has high expectations for Tatum after watching the 23-year-old prepare for his fifth NBA season.
"With Jaylen, I wasn't surprised that he's already an All-Star and he's in that status. With Jayson, I was very surprised how quick he took the leap," Horford said. "Just how quick he elevated himself to that status. It's just a different level.
"Being with him the last few weeks here in September and seeing his progress even from last season, he's getting it. He understands it. He understands how he needs to work, how he needs to take care of his body and all those things. He gets all that stuff and we're gonna see another big year from him."
Also discussed in the new episode: Forsberg breaks down why the team is optimistic about the upcoming season, Brad Stevens’ excitement about his impending first trade deadline and all the behind the scenes discussions about new jersey numbers. Horford on what impresses him most about new head coach Ime Udoka. Enes Kanter on choosing ‘lucky 13’ as his new jersey number, why he expects Tatum to be a top 10 player this season, and what he missed most about Boston.