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Published: Sat, November 04, 2017
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Gordon Hayward in emotional interview: I wondered whether injury was career-ending

Gordon Hayward in emotional interview: I wondered whether injury was career-ending

During the interview, Hayward also shed some light on his progress thus far, and has vowed to return to the court better than ever.

"More and more through the rehab process I'll be with the guys. On the road to recovery, and excited to attack that".

Gordon Hayward has no shortage of fellow athletes to turn to as he recovers from the devastating ankle injury he suffered just five minutes into his Boston Celtics career.

Hayward said when he saw his foot pointing the wrong way after his awkward landing, the pain was not initially very intense. "They give you a little bit of perspective, because they don't know what's going on". You kind of learn to do that over the years, to fall the right way. "I haven't had a chance too much recently", he said. Defensively, he can guard multiple positions and bottle up opponents off the dribble.

But it will take more than toughness to bounce back from the injury. How could he not?

"Daily, I still have negative thoughts". Get the app and get the game. And as a parent myself.

"And this is where it makes me emotional because... like, I wouldn't want Bernie or Charlie to go through that so. But it's something I'll have to deal with, so I might as well deal with it now".

But now, Hayward is looking toward the future.

Hayward, 27, was entering his eighth season this year after spending the first seven of his career in Utah.

"As a parent, you don't want your child to go through that", said Hayward. Gordon opened up about the game when his National Basketball Association careerflashed before his eyes - and got emotional talking about the toll it took on his parents, who were in attendance. He spent two weeks immobile in his bed - weeks that can be the darkest period in recovery, and that no amount of boo-boo stickers and adorable social-media videos can fully fix. It's going to be really important for my mental health to stay involved, still be a part of the team. "I have to change that way of thinking". According to ESPN's Chris Forsberg, Hayward is already out of a cast and in a walking boot, taking shots in a chair to keep his form at its peak. Celtic head coach Brad Stevens even mentioned that Hayward was shooting baskets from a chair. "But I know it's gonna be a long and hard process". All I could think was that it's all over.

He paused, appearing to choose his words carefully. "I'm thankful that he reached out right away, and that's he's someone I can continue to talk to".

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