HAYWARD’S HARD ROAD REWARDED
Gordon Hayward and his wife, Robyn, have an agreement, largely at her insistence. The pact goes back to well before the Celtics forward’s mission was consumed by his recovery from a broken left tibia. Either his former Utah team had just lost, or he hadn’t played well — especially by a personal set of elevated standards — and he vented that frustration on the way home. “I’ve always kind of given him after games — like if it’s a bad game and they lose and he’s mad — I give him the car ride home,” Robyn said last week. “And then once we’re home, gotta get over it. “Can’t dwell too much on it, because there’s always another game, another game that same week, so what’s the point of being so mad? You’re going to go to practice the next day, you’re going to watch film, so get over it. “So I’m not that sympathetic.” Gordon smiled, nodded and said, “That’s for damn sure.” Robyn continued. “Oh yeah, in fact that’s probably a nicer version of what I say. Like we don’t — there’s no reason to dwell, get over it. There’s another game.” None are bigger than what is approaching. Tuesday night’s nationally televised season opener against Philadelphia is not simply an Eastern Conference semifinals rematch and a fresh steak on the fire of this old, rekindled rivalry. The night will feature Hayward’s return from a lost season: First, post surgery, with his leg in traction and shooting at the basket from a chair, then getting in the pool and into the monotonous grind of the AntiGravity (AlterG) Treadmill. He was generally separated from the team, sequestered in the bleakness of the Celtics’ now former practice facility in Waltham.
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