Al Horford said he was a sharpshooter. Then a reporter laughed it off.

Al Horford has shot 44.6% from 3lbs this season. AP Photo/David Zalubowski
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The way Al Horford reinvented himself as a 3-point shooting threat helped the Celtics become one of the most offensively powerful teams in the NBA.

The veteran postman shot 44.6 percent from 3-point range during the regular season, which was second among qualified players according to ESPN. Only 36 players in the league have shot at least 40% from three this season, which means on average there are about one or two players per team who can keep up with that percentage.

Horford is also shooting 47.6 percent from the field, which is third among Celtics starters behind Robert Williams III and Jaylen Brown.

Do these numbers qualify Horford as elite? Depends on who you ask.

On Friday, Horford made it clear to reporters that he believed that was the case. He was asked about the difference between his shooting this season and last season.

“Not much difference, really,” Horford said in a video posted to Twitter by Bobby Manning of the Boston Sports Journal. “I still have good looks and will continue to photograph them. Even throughout the season, I had ups and downs. It’s just part of it when you’re a sniper.

The sniper part drew audible laughs from a reporter, according to Manning.

” You laugh ? You don’t think I’m a sniper? My numbers don’t support it? asked Horford.

“They do,” said the reporter.

Horford’s shooting has certainly come a long way since entering the league with Atlanta. He went a combined for 3 for 12 from 3-point range in his first five years in the league. He took 325 3-point attempts this past regular season alone.

His numbers went down a bit in the playoffs, which was probably the basis of the response. Horford is 2 of 12 from 3 points this round of the playoffs.

“We walk through walls,” Horford said. “So stay confident and ready to go.”

The Celtics are tied with Philadelphia heading into Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals on Friday night.


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