Ainge: Hayward ‘back to resuming basketball activities’

Celtics forward Gordon Hayward says he intends to be ready for the season-opening game.

Boston Celtics small forward Gordon Hayward has resumed basketball activities, general manager Danny Ainge told Adam Himmelsbach of The Boston Globe.

Hayward fractured his left ankle in the Celtics’ season-opening loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Oct. 17 and missed the entire season. He underwent a procedure on May 31 to remove a plate and screws from his surgically repaired left leg.

“Before he left, he was running out on the basketball court,” Ainge said. “He was back to resuming basketball activities. It feels great.”

Hayward recently said in his blog that the removal of the plate and screws was a surprise. The All-Star was having some pain on the outside of his ankle which forced him to undergo tests.

The tests revealed the pain was blocking Hayward’s progression and that it was the hardware which was causing the issue.

Celtics coach Brad Stevens said in early June that Hayward is “doing great” and all signs point to an early August to mid August fully cleared time frame.

With both Hayward and point guard Kyrie Irving expected to be healthy next season, the Celtics are primed to contend for a championship. Without Irving and Hayward during this year’s postseason, Boston took LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers to seven games in the Eastern Conference Finals, so one would surmise they will be even more lethal with their two stars back.