Hornets injury update on Gordon Hayward

By Richard Walker

The Charlotte Hornets injury woes continued to grow on Saturday when the team announced forward Gordon Hayward’s right foot sprain will keep him out of action for at least one month.

Gordon Hayward during a recent Hornets’ practice session.

Hayward suffered the injury during the second quarter of Friday’s 114-97 win at the Indiana Pacers.

According to the team, “the initial diagnosis was confirmed via a physician’s exam and studies today (Saturday) in Indianapolis. He will be reevaluated in approximately four weeks and further updates on his status will be provided as appropriate.”

Hayward is averaging 19.6 points, 5.9 rebounds and 4.1 assists in 34.0 minutes per game in 44 starts this year.

Hayward’s injury means three top rotation players – LaMelo Ball (right wrist fracture) and Malik Monk (right ankle sprain) are the others – are currently out of action.

The Hornets have now now lost 59 games to injury or illness this season, including at least one game for every opening night starter; Center Cody Zeller has missed 19 games, guard Devonte’ Graham 10 games, Hayward four games, forward P.J. Washington four games and guard Terry Rozier two games.

Given Hayward’s four-week reevaluation timeline, he would miss at least 14 games and wouldn’t be back any earlier than May 1; The Hornets have 10 games in May.

Charlotte entered Saturday’s games with a 25-23 overall record and was in fourth place in the Eastern Conference as it pursues the franchise’s first playoff appearance since 2016. The separation between fourth place and 14th place in the conference is only eight games.

The Hornets play again on Sunday at 6 p.m at eighth-place Boston (24-25).