When Gordon Hayward joined the Boston Celtics in the 2017 offseason, he was coming off a career year. Hayward earned his first-ever All-Star appearance and looked in the form of his life.
However, with the Celtics, everything went downhill for Hayward. He suffered a gruesome injury in his very first game as a Celtics player. Since returning from the injury, he has been a shell of himself and is diminished to a supporting player.
Next season, Hayward will be eligible for a $34.2 million player option in his deal. But according to ESPN’s Zach Lowe, the 29-year-old might not return to the TD Garden.
“There’s some buzz out there. And I can’t figure out what the buzz means. The buzz that I’m hearing is like the smoke, the smoke indicating that something is happening. I’m not sure what’s up, but I don’t think it’s a lock that Gordon Hayward is on the Celtics next year.
“…We don’t know that there’s a Gordon Hayward chase. We don’t know that any of this is happening. I’m just saying that there’s a little bit of buzz… Something is mildly afoot here.”
Gordon Hayward averaged 17.5 points per game in the regular season while starting in all games. However, come playoff time, Hayward suffered another injury that kept him out of action for the majority of the run.
As a result, the Celtics were eliminated in the Eastern Conference Finals and will have to try again next year. Following this playoff exit, there remains a huge question mark on the future of Hayward.
From a financial point of view, running it back with the Celtics will be the best option for him. It’s unlikely that he will land a contract that can match his current contract.
But from a playing point of view, it seems like the Celtics have already moved on from him. They have multiple star players on the roster who can take forward the franchise. The Jayson Tatum-Jaylen Brown duo is clearly the future of the team.
As of now, there is no word from Hayward himself, but if you are to believe the rumors, the one-time All-Star will be on his way out. What are your thoughts? Will Gordon Hayward return to the Celtics?
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