Less than halfway through the first quarter of the team’s season opener against the Cavaliers, Celtics forward Gordon Hayward fractured his left ankle after landing awkwardly while attempting to field an alley-oop pass from Kyrie Irving.
— Clay Wendler (@ClayWendler) October 18, 2017
After the play Hayward immediately pointed to his leg, as staff rushed on court to address the injury. The 27-year-old exited the game on a stretcher with a full-leg brace to immobilize his knee and ankle. The TNT broadcast later announced that Hayward was going to be “transported from the locker room to another area of the arena.”
Gordon Hayward badly injured leg pic.twitter.com/1SRzjZYu1i
— 790 The Ticket (@790TheTicket) October 18, 2017
— A. Sherrod Blakely (@ASherrodblakely) October 18, 2017
As their teammate received medical attention, the Celtics huddled together on the sideline. Both players and fans were visibly shaken at the injury’s apparent severity.
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) October 18, 2017
The Cavs bench reaction to the Gordon Hayward injury ☹️🙏🏾pic.twitter.com/oKeDRkiIyR
— Jason McIntyre (@jasonrmcintyre) October 18, 2017
— SLAM Magazine (@SLAMonline) October 18, 2017
Following the completion of the first quarter, ESPN’s Brian Windhorst reported that LeBron James and Isaiah Thomas both visited Hayward while he was still in the Cavaliers’ locker room. Windhorst later reported that Hayward was leaving the arena with the team’s assistant general manager Mike Zarren and co-owner Steve Pagliuca.
Gordon Hayward leaving arena on stretcher. Celtics asst GM Mike Zarren & co-owner Steve Pagliuca are with him. Leg is in protective sleeve
— Brian Windhorst (@WindhorstESPN) October 18, 2017
With 7:03 remaining in the second quarter, the TNT broadcast announced that Hayward had been diagnosed with a fractured left ankle. The Celtics confirmed his status on Twitter.
#NEBHInjuryReport: After a medical evaluation by Celtics/Cavs medical personnel Gordon Hayward has been diagnosed w/ a fractured left ankle.
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) October 18, 2017
At halftime, the Cavaliers led the Celtics, 54-38. Following the injury, Cleveland went on a 23-9 run. According to ESPN’s Ben Fawkes, Boston’s title odds have also dropped from 10-1 to 20-1.
— gary washburn (@GwashburnGlobe) October 18, 2017
During the second half, the TNT broadcast announced that Hayward would be transported back to Boston.
Officials tell me Gordon Hayward is being flown via MedFlight to Boston. He will then be taken to NE Baptist Hosp in Boston. Our best to him
— Blair Miller (@BlairMillerTV) October 18, 2017