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Celtics’ Gordon Hayward will play in Game 3 against the Heat

Heat, Gordon Hayward, Celtics

Boston Celtics small forward Gordon Hayward will play in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Miami Heat, per Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium.

The Celtics wing has been out since the seeding games after suffering a Grade III ankle sprain.

The Celtics are down 2-0 to the Heat in the best-of-seven series. A loss in Game 3 pretty much signals the end to Boston’s 2019-20 season since no team has never come back from a 3-0 series deficit in the playoffs.

Gordon Hayward appeared in 52 games for the Celtics during the regular season. The former Utah Jazz All-Star averaged 17.5 points, 6.7 rebounds and 4.1 assists per contest while shooting 50.0 percent from the field, 38.3 percent from beyond the arc and 85.5 percent from the free-throw line.

The Celtics had a heated locker room session after the Game 2 loss, during which Marcus Smart and Jaylen Brown needed to be separated. The Heat are getting into Boston’s heads, folks. The return of Hayward will surely help the Celtics on the offensive end since he’s a gifted scorer and shooter.

However, Boston has to play better defense in Game 3 if it wants to win. The Heat scored the ball at will in Games 1 and 2. That can’t happen in Game 3 for Brad Stevens’ crew.