A photo tweeted by Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge about a swimming race between Gordon Hayward's trainers included the nugget that Hayward was standing, and apparently walking, without a brace on the ankle he injured five minutes into the NBA season.
USA swimmer @smeathers5 (no muscle) coached by Celtic great @gordonhayward (no brace) lost a devastating race to Australian swimmer @stephen_mount today. No rematch is scheduled nor will be. #swimmersneedmuscles pic.twitter.com/lxTD4UqiIB— Danny Ainge (@danielrainge) January 9, 2018
Hayward retweeted Ainge with an eyes emoji. Hmmm.
It was less than a month ago that Hayward shed his walking boot, leading to speculation about a possible return this season after it was originally thought the devastating injury wouldn't allow the Celtics forward to play at all in his first season in Boston.
Hayward said after the boot came off that his "mind is open" about a return sometime this season: "I'm trying to get back as fast as I can," he said then. "It all depends on how I heal and taking it day by day, goal by goal. We will see what happens."
It does appear Hayward is progressing quickly.