Kyrie Irving's first year with the Boston Celtics hasn't featured many low moments, but the All-Star guard does have remorse over the injury Gordon Hayward suffered in the season opener against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
"I was upset because I threw that pass," Irving told ESPN's Jackie MacMullan. "It was crowded up there. [Dwyane Wade] was on the back side. LeBron came over to help. Gordon jumped without seeing where he was landing. I wish I hadn't thrown it. I felt really bad about it."
Hayward was diagnosed with a fractured left tibia and dislocated ankle after landing awkwardly trying to catch an alley-oop pass from Irving five minutes into the first quarter against the Cavs.
In a Facebook post about his injury written on Nov. 1, Hayward said he would be out for the entire 2017-18 season doing rehab after having surgery.
Speaking to the media last month, Hayward sounded open to the possibility of returning if he could get back to 100 percent.
“My mind is open to that,” he told reporters. “I’m trying to get back as fast as I can. It all depends on how I heal. Day by day. Goal by goal. We’ll see what happens.”
Despite Hayward's absence, the Celtics own the best record in the Eastern Conference at 30-10. Irving is averaging 24.8 points and 4.9 assists per game.