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Thunder’s Paul George told Celtics’ Gordon Hayward it took 2 years to recover from tibia fracture

Gordon Hayward, Paul George, Celtics, Thunder

Boston Celtics small forward Gordon Hayward has been receiving advice from Oklahoma City Thunder superstar Paul George as he makes his way back from the gruesome left ankle fracture he suffered last season.

George, who sustained an open tibia fracture in 2014 while playing for Team USA, told Hayward it took him a full two years before he could play freely and not think about his injury.

Via Jackie MacMullan of ESPN:

During his most discouraging days, Gordon Hayward recalls what Paul George confided to him: It took two full years before he could play freely, without residue of his own catastrophic open tibia fracture from 2014.

“Patience,” George counseled Hayward. “Focus on who you are, not who you used to be.”

George is back to being one of the best players in the NBA again with the Thunder. In fact, the swingman is putting up better numbers this season with the Thunder than he did with the Indiana Pacers before he suffered the injury.

Hayward has been struggling all season to find his rhythm. The forward, though, had one of his best games of the season on Tuesday against the Golden State Warriors, finishing with 30 points while shooting 12-of-16 from the field and 4-of-6 from beyond the arc.

Hopefully, Hayward can build off that performance and play well to close out the season for the Celtics.