Boston Celtics star Gordon Hayward is starting to look like himself again and just in time with training camp right around the corner.
Hayward Dunking Again
In a workout video posted by NBA Trainer Jason Smeathers Hayward drives hard to the hoop and flushes down a two-handed jam.
— Jason Smeathers (@smeathers5) August 13, 2018
The dunk appears to be his first since suffering a broken fibula on opening night of the 2017 season. This is great news for Celtics fans as Hayward will play a key role in Boston’s championship level aspirations this season. The 28-year-old forward averaged 21.9 points per game to go along with 5.4 rebounds and 3.5 assists in the 2016 campaign with the Utah Jazz. The Boston faithful has yet to see what the 8-year veteran can do in Celtic green.
Moving Around Well, Should be Back by Training Camp
The major concern in the immediate aftermath following Hayward’s injury was whether or not he would ever be as explosive as he was pre-injury. A big part of what makes him so effective is his athleticism and ability to cut efficiently. He relies on his slashing ability to maneuver around his defender and get to his spot consistently. With an ankle injury as severe as the one Hayward suffered there is no guarantee that the ankle would heal sufficiently enough to supply an adequate amount of support to generate an explosive response.
Seeing Hayward move around so well is a great sign that his ankle is healing well and that he should have a great chance to be just as effective as he was pre-injury. Having a talent such as Hayward gives Boston a great shot at reaching the NBA Finals for the first time since 2010. The team fell one win shy of making it to the title round last season despite injuries to both Gordon Hayward and Kyrie Irving.
The excitement surrounding this year’s Celtics team is on par with that of the 2008 crew. Expectations are always tough to live up to, but with Hayward coming back at full strength the odds are certainly in their favor.