ORLANDO, Fla. The games outcome had long since been decided. But that didnt matter one bit to Al Harrington.
With the Orlando Magic down by an insurmountable margin Sunday night to the Memphis Grizzlies, Harrington cut to the basket and scored off a crisp pass from rookie Kyle OQuinn. Then he deflected the ensuing inbounds pass by Jon Leuer, gathered in the ball and missed his first shot before converting the put-back.
In a season when feel-good moments have grown harder to find, the return of the 15-year NBA veteran from nearly a 10-month absence resulting from arthroscopic knee surgery compounded by a staph infection feels like a million bucks. Harringtons hustle and work ethic are attributes that the Magic hope will serve as an inspiration on a team where four of the five current starters are 24 or younger.
I just try to show them that playing hard is whats going to keep them around, said Harrington, who turned 33 last month. Im in a type of situation where there are rookies ...