Before he played Division I basketball at Butler University or became an NBA All-Star, a teenage Gordon Hayward was much shorter and much better at tennis.
Before the Boston Celtics hosted the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday, the forward’s two best sports came together, as he swapped jerseys with U.S. tennis legend John McEnroe.
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The retired pro was in town promoting the Laver Cup, an international indoor hard court men’s tennis tournament, scheduled for Sept. 25 through Sept. 27 at TD Garden. Roger Federer is among the talent to take the court in Boston.
While talking to the media, McEnroe admitted his jealousy as a New York Sports fan over Boston’s unbelievable success throughout the past two decades, per CLNS Media’s Mike Petraglia.
After exchanging jerseys, McEnroe participated in the Celtics’ shoot-around with Hayward and rookie Tacko Fall. As it turns out, a tennis match between Hayward and McEnroe would be much more competitive than a basketball game, as the 5-foot-11 tennis great had a hard time shooting the ball.