Gordon Hayward returned to action on Saturday night after missing three weeks of action due to a Grade III sprained ankle. During that period, the Celtics swept the Philadelphia 76ers and beating the defending champions Toronto Raptors in seven games. Now the challenge is bigger as the Miami Heat are the best team in the East and the C's will need all the help they can get from Hayward.
It was initially reported that Hayward was expected to leave the bubble once his wife was close to giving birth to Gordon's fourth kid, his first son. During Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals, ESPN's Rachel Nichols reported that Hayward was planning to stay in the bubble for the rest of the postseason. Hayward would later confirm the news, explaining this stage was very important to miss it.
“I’m definitely not 100 percent but it is what it is. It’s the conference finals and I’m going to give us whatever I can,” he said after Saturday’s won.
“That obviously wasn’t in the plan, getting injured and going back to Indianapolis for treatment. I trust those guys with everything there, and I guess I’m a little bit lucky Robyn was already in Indy, so I got a chance to be at home and get great treatment,” he said.
“Robyn could be having a baby at any point in time, so it’s probably something I’ll be here and by the time I get back I might miss the birth if she rushes into the hospital. We discussed it and we prayed about it, and I think it’s best if I stay here and help out team,” said Hayward.
Now the Celtics have all their pieces and fortunately, they'll have more days to rest and get better for Game 4 on Wednesday night. This obviously will benefit Hayward, as he has more days to work on his game and get closer to his best form.