Gordon Hayward has, for the most part, remained remarkably composed in the aftermath of his gruesome ankle injury on NBA’s opening night.
But there’s one memory from that evening that causes the Boston Celtics forward to lose it a bit.
Hayward sat down with ABC’s Matt Lauer for an interview that aired on the “TODAY” show Thursday morning and was asked to run through that fateful moment when he dislocated his ankle against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
His answer led to an emotional moment, as Hayward explained that the hardest part of the injury was seeing his parents in the Quicken Loans Arena stands after he went down.
“I mean, as a parent, you don’t want your child to go through that,” Hayward told Lauer. “And as a parent myself, it’s like, I (was) thinking, I would rather take their pain. And this is where it makes me emotional, because — like, I wouldn’t want (my two children) Bernie or Charlie to go through that.”
Hayward had to pause several seconds before finishing his answer.
“I remember seeing my mom and she’s crying,” he added. “Like, that’s just tough — it’s tough to see your parents cry, too, because it makes you emotional.”
Hayward has been pretty candid about his injury and path to recovery — he published a blog post Wednesday night detailing his physical and mental reaction to his injury — but this is the first time we’ve seen him visibly display so much emotion about that night.
Thumbnail photo via Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports Images