Gordon Hayward and the Celtics had such high hopes for his first season in Boston. With Kyrie Irving joining the squad, the Celtics planned on once again competing for the East’s top seed and hoped this year they had the star power to get past the Cavs in the playoffs.
The opener against Cleveland was to be their chance to send a message to the East’s top team, but just over five minutes into the game everything changed for Hayward and Boston. Hayward suffered a fractured tibia and dislocated ankle in one of the most gruesome basketball injuries in recent memory, causing fans, players on both sides, and the announcers to all recoil at the sight of his left ankle.
Hayward was flown back to Boston on Tuesday night where he will receive further treatment and examination before proceeding with surgery and the eventual long and slow journey back to the basketball court through rehab. Many around the NBA reached out to Hayward on social media, but none offered more support or better advice on how to fight back than Kobe Bryant.