Hornets' Gordon Hayward Out vs. Spurs with Back Injury Described as Discomfort

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorFebruary 14, 2021

Charlotte Hornets forward Gordon Hayward, left, goes to the basket as Miami Heat guard Tyler Herro (14) defends during overtime in an NBA basketball game, Monday, Feb. 1, 2021, in Miami. The Hornets won 129-121. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
Lynne Sladky/Associated Press

Charlotte Hornets forward Gordon Hayward has been ruled out for Sunday's game vs. the San Antonio Spurs with lower back discomfort, per Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated.   

The 30-year-old has averaged a career-high 22.3 points to go along with 5.5 rebounds and 3.8 assists in his first year with the Hornets, who signed the ex-Utah Jazz and Boston Celtic player to a four-year, $120 million contract last offseason.

Hayward has enjoyed much personal success in Charlotte, and the Hornets have improved from last year's 23-42 mark with a 13-14 record this year, which could be good enough for the playoffs if they maintain their current pace.

The Butler product has missed significant time with injuries in the past, notably a season-ending dislocated left ankle and a fractured tibia just minutes into his Celtics tenure in Oct. 2017. He also missed a month with a fractured left hand in 2019 and another month during the 2019-20 postseason with a Grade 3 right ankle sprain.

He's missed one game thus far in 2020-21, sitting a Jan. 14 contest against the Toronto Raptors with a left hip strain.

Caleb Martin entered the starting lineup for Hayward last time around and should see a bump in minutes on Sunday with Hayward unavailable.