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Gordon Hayward aware of mental impact of NBA postponement

As the Celtics slowly solve the physical conditioning side of absence, Hayward foresees difficulty transitioning back into the game emotionally when it happens.

UT: Phoenix Suns v Utah Jazz Photo by Chris Elise/NBAE via Getty Images

Today marks one month since the doctor ran out of the locker room in Oklahoma City and declared Rudy Gobert positive for coronavirus. The NBA postponed its season within minutes, leading its teams and players into perpetual uncertainty.

Gordon Hayward opened up in recent days about the stress and uncertainty associated with that. He’s advanced from running up the hill near his house with his three daughters to Celtics-issued equipment. His physical workouts range between kettlebells, the Peloton and dumbbells. None of that placed him in the same mindset the season does each year.

“The mental and emotional part is certainly going to be something we’re all going to have to work through when we get back,” Hayward said. “You just get in this mode and this mindset when you’re in the middle of the season and then to just kind of not have that for however long of a period this is going to be, it’s going to be an adjustment.”

The Celtics spent one night in Milwaukee while tests backed up due to increased demand. That’s when the first nerves began for Hayward, knowing his wife was pregnant at home with their fourth child and without assurance yet that he was negative after Boston played against Rudy Gobert the week prior. Marcus Smart was eventually the lone positive test.

Hayward and his wife reunited at the end of that week and in the month since they’ve taken more walks, finished bike lessons, distracted the kids with Disney+ and rewatched the Butler national championship game against Duke for the first time since.

As many weigh in on what it’ll take to return as the NBA draft concerns, he shared sentiments with LeBron James and Jayson Tatum that they can’t immediately jump into action. He estimates it’ll take 2-3 weeks to prepare.

“We’ve donated (to Boston Children’s),” Hayward said. “We realized and appreciated so much what the people that are continuing to work and continuing to provide support and help for people that are getting sick. We just wanted to show some gratitude to them.”

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1. What will the NBA look like when it resumes? —

2. Who on the Celtics has been most entertaining during quarantine? —

3. Which Celtics player is most impacted by a hiatus? —

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