Gordon Hayward Returns To Salt Lake City For First Time With Celtics
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – It took a year longer than expected but Gordon Hayward played his first game against the Utah Jazz in a Boston Celtics uniform.
Hayward had 13 points and 7 assists on 3-of-9 shooting from the field, receiving boo’s from the fans from warm ups through the final buzzer.
“I expected it. It’s part of the game,” said Hayward after the game when asked if he though the fans would boo him.
Before The Game
The excitement and anticipation from the fans and media showed on Twitter.
Jazz fan Brennan Smith shot a video of the player introductions inside Vivint Smart Home Arena.
It was fun to be in that arena tonight and I’ll remember that atmosphere for a long time. Felt like a legendary wrestling match with Hayward as the picture perfect heel #TakeNote pic.twitter.com/fBLilT9by3
— Brennan Smith (@BrennanJSmith) November 10, 2018
ESPN’s Tim MacMahon took the opportunity to snap a photo of Donovan Mitchell and Hayward warming up at the same time.
The Jazz’s past (Gordon Hayward) and present (Donovan Mitchell) warming up on opposite ends of the floor. pic.twitter.com/PfbtqVXH53
— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) November 10, 2018
Following the game, Jazz players as well as head coach Quin Snyder was asked if the game against Boston meant anymore to them.
“It is just another game. The significant thing about this game is Boston’s a really good team and we needed a home win,” Snyder said.
Hayward spent seven seasons with the Jazz after being selected him ninth overall in the 2010 draft.
Jae Crowder made a statement against his old team, the Boston Celtics scoring 20 points off the bench.
“I really wanted to win this game,” Crowder said. “No matter if I played good or bad, I just wanted to win the game. Obviously, I was able to play well. It means a lot to me to get this win. We see these guys in about a week, and I want to get that win as well,” he added.
The Jazz will play their final regular season game against the Celtics on Saturday, November 17 in Boston.
Rudy Gobert spent three seasons with Hayward and happy with the energy that Jazz fans provided the team against the Celtics.
“You could hear it (the fans), this meant a lot for our fans. Especially after we lost four games at home, we kind of owed them that win tonight,” Gobert added.
Fans Reaction To Hayward’s Return
It took over a year for Hayward to play in his first game against the Jazz since leaving the team to sign with the Boston Celtics. He missed all but five minutes of the 2017-18 season with a gruesome leg injury. This game was circled on the calendars of Jazz fans.
Jazz fan Kris was excited that Donovan Mitchell scored against Hayward.
Mitchell 1 on 1 vs Hayward pic.twitter.com/jmCIdhidkc
— Kris #TakeNote🎷 (@5kl) November 10, 2018
Andy Larsen of the Salt Lake Tribune took a picture of a fan that was creative with his jersey as he removed Hayward’s last name on his Jazz jersey.
— Andy Larsen (@andyblarsen) November 10, 2018
The Jazz will begin a four game road trip in Memphis on Monday at 6 p.m. on AT&T SportsNet.