If you were one of the unfortunate people who actually watched the video of Celtics forward Gordon Hayward suffering a gruesome leg break in the opening minutes of the first game of the new NBA season, it probably comes as no surprise that his agent announced on Wednesday that the All-Star will likely miss the entire 2017-18 season as he recovered.
That’s the bad news.
The good news is that Hayward underwent successful surgery to heal a broken tibia and dislocated ankle. It has been described as a “clean break,” so it’s actually the best kind of bad situation possible, all things considered.
“We expect him to make a full recovery and return to his All-Star form,” said Hayward’s agent Mark Bartelstein. There is a very small possibility that Hayward could return, especially if his rehab ends up ahead of schedule and the Celtics make a strong run in the playoffs. It’s still way to early to start planning for that, though.
Boston played their home opener at the TD Garden on Wednesday night. Before the game, fans were greeted with a video from Hayward (straight from his hospital bed) thanking them for their support and wishing the team luck in his absence.
Here’s a transcript for people who can’t be bothered to watch the video:
“What’s up, everybody? I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who has kept me in their thoughts and prayers. I’m going to be all right. Hurting me that I can’t be there for the home opener. I want nothing more just to be with my teammates and walk out onto that floor tonight, but I’ll be supporting you guys from here and I wish you the best of luck. Kill it tonight. Thanks guys.”
The Celtics lost the game 108-100 to the Bucks, putting them in an early 0-2 hole. They were expected to challenge Cleveland at the top of the Eastern Conference standings. They still may end up doing that, but their job is now a lot harder without Hayward in their lineup.