The Utah Jazz may have the luxury of getting small forward Gordon Hayward, who has been recovering from a broken finger since October, back on Sunday when the team takes on the New York Knicks.
The 26-year-old plans to make his regular season debut for Utah after injuring the ring finger on his left hand. The former Butler standout will look to finally get started and build on a campaign in which he posted 19.7 points, five rebounds and 3.7 assists per contest last season.
Though Hayward hasn’t been able to contribute on the court as the season gets underway, the forward has been playing a role off of it.
“He’s been around, been with us during the process, practice,” center Rudy Gobert told Utah’s Deseret News. “Right now traveling with us. I think he’s showed that we are together. He’s hurt but he still sticks with the team and that’s good.”
Utah entered the weekend with an even 3-3 clip as they look to weather the storm without a couple of players on head coach Quin Snyder’s bench. Aside from Hayward’s absence, shooting guard Alec Burks is still out indefinitely after undergoing a recent ankle injury. Veteran big man Boris Diaw is nursing a leg injury as well, though he is expected to return to full action sometime in the middle of November. The team recently got forward Derrick Favors back after he dealt with a sore knee to start the preseason.
Gordon’s potential debut begins a five-game road stand for the Jazz as the team plays all five games versus Eastern Conference affiliates.