In the Celtics’ 115-102 win over the Timberwolves, Gordon Hayward had his best game of the season. Scoring 35 points on 14-18 shooting including 4-7 from three, he was sensational all game long. This begs the obvious question: Is Hayward back?
YES. Big time.
In a night to remember, Hayward finally looked like his old self. We got a glimpse of this on December 1, also versus the Timberwolves, when he dropped 30 points, 9 rebounds and 8 assists. But tonight, even without Kyrie Irving to facilitate the offense, Gordon Hayward took over early and did not ever let up. Oh, and he did it all coming off the bench.
He was dunking, blowing by defenders, draining threes in Taj Gibson’s face, pulling up from mid-range and, above all, trusting himself. He even bodied Karl-Anthony Towns a couple time on defense. One of the hardest things to do coming back from an injury is to trust your body will not fail like it had before. But Gordon was planting, cutting and jumping without any fear in his abilities.
Hayward is BACK… or maybe he just really hates the Minnesota Timberwolves. That is a very real possibility. They did pass on him in favor of Wesley Johnson in the 2010 NBA Draft. Is he still holding a grudge? Back to back 30 point games for a player who is struggling versus most other teams don’t come out of nowhere. I’m totally kidding, Gordon Hayward is back, baby!