Gordon Hayward Lays Out Why He Signed With The Boston Celtics In His Official Announcement Article With The Players Tribune
Gordon Hayward signed with the Boston Celtics on the Fourth of July. Everyone knew he had a strong bond with Celtics coach Brad Stevens, but the strength of their relationship was unveiled with the signing.
While there were reports in the early afternoon on the fourth, the official word came from Hayword himself who announced his decision via Derek Jeter’s site, the Players Tribune.
His piece ultimately totaled over 2000 words with much of it thanking Utah and how much he enjoyed his seven seasons there. But towards the end, he talked about Coach Stevens and the City of Boston.
He talks about how tough a decision it was to come to Boston. But his relationship with Brad Stevens is what pushed him over the edge.
Read the excerpt below where Hayward talks about Stevens and Boston.
It was such a tough decision. But there was one person who I knew I could talk to about it from every angle, who I knew would give me the smartest and most honest perspective available: Coach Stevens.
Coach Stevens was so great about it, all of it. He helped me lay out my options, and talked it through from both sides … but in the end, when I needed it, he also gave me my space. And he also let me know that it was my choice to make — and that he would be there for me, on the other side of it, either way. And of course I ended up deciding to leave: I declared for the draft, and got drafted, and started my new NBA life in Utah. But it always meant a lot to me, to know how, in that moment, even with our lives at this strange crossroads together, Coach Stevens was someone I could count on.
And I guess it’s pretty crazy. Because seven years later, I had to make an even tougher decision — and again, Coach Stevens and I found ourselves at a crossroads together. And again, he was the person I knew I could count on the most.
And now I’ve decided to sign with the Boston Celtics.
There were so many great things pulling me in that direction. There was the winning culture of Boston, as a city — from the Sox, to the Pats, to the Bruins. There was the special history of the Celtics, as a franchise — from Russell, to Bird, to Pierce, and it goes on. There was the amazing potential of this current Celtics roster, as a team — from ownership, to the front office, to a talented roster with Isaiah, and Al, and everyone else. And of course, there was Coach Stevens: Not just for the relationship that we’ve built off the court — but also for the one that we started building on the court, all of those years ago, in Indiana.
And that unfinished business we had together, back in 2010, when I left Butler for the NBA … as far as I’m concerned, all of these years later, we still have it:
And that’s to win a championship.
At the end there he talks about how he and Stevens fell just short at Butler in winning a National Title, and how he wants to win one with the Boston Celtics.
Hayward continues to say all the right things and soon it will be time for Boston to integrate him into their offense.