NBA Basketball

Hayward has surgery, unlikely to return this season

(Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

(TSX / STATS) -- Gordon Hayward's first season with the Boston Celtics is probably over after five minutes of game action.

Hayward underwent surgery Wednesday night to repair a fractured left tibia and dislocated left ankle, injuries that occurred early in the season opener Tuesday at Cleveland.

Following the operation in Boston, Hayward's agent, Mark Bartelstein, told ESPN that his client is unlikely to get back on the court this season.

Calling the surgery a success, Bartelstein added, "We expect him to make a full recovery and return to his All-Star form."

The Celtics returned home Wednesday night and lost for the second night in a row, falling to the Milwaukee Bucks 108-100. The Cavaliers beat the Celtics 102-99 on Tuesday.

Hayward addressed the Boston crowd pregame Wednesday in a message recorded from his hospital bed, saying, "What's up, everybody? I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who has kept me in their thoughts and prayers. I'm going to be all right. It's hurting me that I can't be there for the home opener; I want nothing more than just to be with my teammates and walk out onto that floor tonight. I'll be supporting you guys from here. I wish you the best of luck. Kill it tonight."

Hayward, a 27-year-old forward, signed a four-year, $128 million contract with the Celtics in the offseason. On Tuesday, he was trying to convert a lob pass from Kyrie Irving when he and Cavaliers forward LeBron James ran into each other. Hayward immediately called for help with his ankle turned the wrong way.

Updated October 19, 2017

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