Celtics forward Gordon Hayward originally planned to leave the NBA bubble when it was time for his wife, Robyn, to give birth.
However, that all changed after an ankle sprain suffered in the Celtics’ first playoff game forced Hayward to leave the bubble. While at home, it was decided that the 6-foot-7 sharpshooter would return to the Orlando campus and not leave again, even for the birth. So Hayward FaceTimed into the delivery room Wednesday in Indiana for the birth of his son, Gordon Theodore, ESPN.com reported.
The birth came just hours before Boston’s 112-109 loss to the Heat in Game 4. It is the couple’s first son after having three daughters.
“Yeah, the baby arrived,” Celtics coach Brad Stevens told reporters Wednesday. “I got word late afternoon. I’ll let Gordon and Robyn announce the rest of that. Very, very happy to hear the news. Very happy to hear that she’s doing great.”
Due to the league’s strict bubble protocols, Hayward would’ve been subject to another quarantine period if he left the Orlando bubble again. It would’ve forced him to miss at least two games.
“I think that, obviously, wasn’t in the plan, getting injured, going back to Indianapolis for treatment,” Hayward said after Game 3, his first game back after rehabbing his injury. “I trust those guys with everything back there. Obviously, a little bit lucky that Robyn was there already in Indy so I got a chance to be at home and get great treatment but that wasn’t in the plan.
“Robyn could be having a baby at any point in time so I think it’s probably something that I’ll be here and, by the time I get back, I might miss the birth if she just goes in and rushes into the hospital. So we discussed it, we prayed about it, and I think it’s probably best if I stay here and help our team.”
In three games this postseason, Hayward has collected 22 points, including five 3-pointers, with 16 rebounds and 10 assists. In Game 3, Hayward scored just six points but he pulled down five rebounds, four assists and three steals. He was a noticeable presence in Boston’s first win of the series. Hayward scored 14 in Game 4, but the loss put the Celtics on the brink of elimination.
“He is a stabilizing force for our team,” Stevens said. “He just can make the right play and make a play for somebody else at the right time. And he hit the big three as they were making a run. So I think he makes us better, that’s for sure.”