Celtics forward Gordon Hayward is set to undergo surgery on his fractured left hand on Monday, and his timetable for return to basketball will follow.
Hayward picked up the fracture during Boston’s 135-115 win on Saturday night over the San Antonio Spurs, after he collided with LaMarcus Aldridge while trying to move around an Aldridge screen.
Hayward immediately left the floor shaking his hand, and went straight down to the Boston locker room.
While a definitive timeline for recovery is yet to come, most estimates put Hayward’s likely time away from basketball at somewhere between one and two months.
His absence is an enormous blow for the Celtics, who are currently 7-1 and sitting a game clear atop the Eastern Conference standings. This season Hayward had been averaging 18.9 points, 7.1 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game, while shooting 55.5% from the floor and 43.3% from 3-point range.
His return from a devastating lower leg injury in the first 10-minutes of his debut with the Celtics in 2017-18 has been long and arduous, but eight games in to the 2018-19 season the former Utah Jazz star had seemingly-returned to the level of play that earned him an All-Star berth in 2017.
Hopefully for Celtics fans – and basketball fans in general – he is able to return with the same level of confidence post-hand surgery.