BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - MAY 23: Al Horford #42 of the Boston Celtics reacts after blocking a shot by Caleb Martin #16 of the Miami Heat during the fourth quarter in Game Four of the 2022 NBA Playoffs Eastern Conference Finals at TD Garden on May 23, 2022 in Boston, Massachusetts. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

It’s always thrilling to see a local athlete rise on the big stage. Right now, the NBA Finals are in full swing, with game one happening Thursday (June 2) at 9 p.m. with the Celtics against the Warriors.

As it turns a out, a local Michigan athlete is at the heart of the Celtics’ rise to the NBA Finals. He even just got an added $5 million of his $26.5 million salary for next season guaranteed, since the Celtics made the NBA Finals. He’ll get $7 million if they win.

That athlete is Al Horford. He played basketball at Grand Ledge High School and went on to win two NCAA basketball titles at Florida. Later, he moved on to the NBA, and he’s currently in his 15th season.

It’s shaping up to be an exciting NBA Finals. In fact, CBS Sports lists the matchup between Horford and former Michigan State Spartan Draymond Green as one of the “Top 5 Key NBA Finals Matchups.” As a Spartan, I’m looking forward to watching Green doing his thing. As a Michigander, it should be exciting to see Horford on the big stage, too. Who do you think will go the whole way? Hit me up on socials here if you want to give me your take on the tournament.

Anne Erickson's love for music drew her into radio, and she started shortly after graduating from MSU. She has a passion for rock and metal, plus local music. She also fronts the band Upon Wings. Email Anne at erickson@WRIF.com, follow her on Instagram at @EricksonAnne and tweet at her @AnneErickson!