Former Butler star and current Utah Jazz
player Gordan Heyward made his first appearance Tuesday night in the Indy Pro AM. Heyward's Blue Team had reached the semi-finals without him while he was returning to full health.
The Brownsburg native made an immediate impact helping his team to a healthy lead. He hit multiple three pointers and slammed down a couple of emphatic dunks. The crowd, which had many Butler fans, was behind Heyward from the tip off.
"It's great. I've had so much support from Indianapolis since the Butler run," he said. "I'm so appreciative of the fans here."
The Blue team ended up giving up a late lead to the Green Team and losing in overtime. Heyward was disappointed he would not get the opportunity to play in the finals, but seemed to enjoy the experience.
The former Butler star has been doing daily workouts and had no news of the NBA lockout
. Like many NBA
players, he simply is looking to stay in shape and practice as much as possible in hopes that a deal gets done.
"It's 9:30 to 1:00 basketball then 2:00 weights, so it's a full day worth of work," said Heyward.
Events like the Pro AM which features professionals such as Heyward, Mario Chalmers, and Eric Gordon could become important if the lockout moves closer to the season. For a young player like Heyward, practice with players of his caliber is essential. Every second away from Utah is time Heyward cannot get back.