Gordon Hayward's stint with Celtics didn't go as expected, but there's no real blame to be placed

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Injury issues, and the development of Jayston Tatum and Jaylen Brown, limited Hayward's impact in Boston
Gordon Hayward's time with the Boston Celtics has officially come to an end. On Saturday, it was reported that Hayward would be signing a four-year deal with the Charlotte Hornets after turning down the player option for the final year on his contract with the Celtics. The move concludes a turbulent, and underwhelming three-season stint for Hayward in Boston. Hayward ends his tenure with the Celtics having started in just one playoff game -- probably not what either side expected when Hayward signed a four-year, $128 million deal with Boston in 2017.

Hayward's stint with the Boston Celtics got off to an extremely rough start, and unfortunately for both sides, it never got fully back on track. During the first quarter of his first game in a Celtics jersey, Hayward shattered his left leg in gruesome fashion. It was an injury that knocked Hayward out for the entirety of the 2017-18 NBA season, and one that he continued to deal with over the next two seasons. Though he was able to return for the start of the '18-19 season, he started in just 18 games for the Celtics that season, and averaged 25.9 minutes per game -- a big drop from the 34.5 minutes per game that he averaged during his final season with the Utah Jazz.

Hayward finally started to look like his old self during the 2019-20 season, as he started in all 52 regular season games that he appeared in, and averaged 33.5…
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