The opening night of the 2017-18 NBA season was interesting for many reasons. First and foremost was Boston Celtics wing Gordon Hayward breaking part of his leg and dislocating his ankle just minutes into his first game with the team.
What followed was an outpouring of support from his fellow NBA players, including guys like Paul George, who had suffered a horrific injury of his own in the past. I remarked at the time that it was an interesting look into the social aspect of an injury like this given the context. All of us, including players, were excited for the NBA to be back and no doubt the quick response on social media was in part due to the fact that so many were watching that first game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Celtics. It was this weird community moment.
Golden State Warriors wing Kevin Durant was one player who was watching that opening night game live, and he just happened to have cameras on him for his YouTube channel when Hayward suffered his catastrophic injury. The response from Durant was immediate and an interesting look into how NBA players took the news in real-time.
In the video above (starting at around 25 seconds) Durant was pretty shaken up and said of the injury, “We know Gordon is going to bounce back and still be Gordon Hayward when he gets back from injury, but it just sucks to see, man.”
Meanwhile, Hayward’s agent has said that it is unlikely he sees the floor again this season.