Celtics forward Gordon Hayward is “unlikely” to play against the Milwaukee Bucks, coach Brad Stevens said during shootaround Thursday morning.
Officially listed as questionable with a right ankle sprain, Hayward suffered the injury Tuesday while playing one-on-one with teammate Semi Ojeleye at the Auerbach Center. He is not expected to be sidelined for an extended period of time.
“It was definitely frustrating,” Hayward said Thursday. “But I don’t think it’ll be that big of a deal. I’ll be all right.”
If Hayward ends up being unavailable against the Bucks, Stevens said two-way player RJ Hunter, whom the team recalled Thursday, will suit up in his place. Hunter is averaging 14.1 points on 36.1 percent shooting in 12 games with Boston’s G-League affiliate, the Maine Red Claws. He has yet to make an appearance with the Celtics this season but played 36 games for Stevens in 2015-16.
“I always pay attention to those guys,” Stevens said. “I’m a lot less concerned about what they’re doing from a statistical standpoint … but more [focused on] are they ready to come and play in what we’re trying to accomplish? I think RJ’s familiarity helps that anyway, and it probably makes that transition ever smoother.”
Bucks at a glance
■ When, where: Thursday, 8 p.m., at Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee.
■ TV, radio: TNT, NBC Sports Boston, WBZ-FM 98.5.
■ Scoring: Giannis Antetokounmpo 27.2, Khris Middleton 17.1, Eric Bledsoe 15.8, Malcolm Brogdon 15.8.
■ Rebounding: Antetokounmpo 12.7, Middleton 5.8, Brogdon 4.8.
■ Assists: Antetokounmpo 6.0, Bledsoe 5.4, Middleton 4.2.
■ Head to head: This is the third and final meeting. The Celtics are 1-1 vs. Milwaukee.
■ Miscellany: The Bucks are 23-5 at home but lost their last home game, by 20 points to Orlando Feb. 9 . . . The Bucks were without Antetokounmpo (right knee soreness) in that game . . . In Sunday’s All-Star Game, Antetokounmpo had 38 points to lead all scorers . . . Milwaukee has won 14 of its last 16.