After missing Friday night’s game, Gordon Hayward returned to the Celtics lineup on Sunday and pitched in a double-double to Boston’s victory over the Thunder in Oklahoma City.

Led by 27 points from Kemba Walker all Boston’s starters scored in double figures. For his part,
G-Time scored 13 points and grabbed 10 boards, one of three Celtics starters in double figures on the glass, on a night when, once again, all the Cs available players pitched in.

“Well I just think the ability to stay with multiple guys on the court at once obviously is a benefit,” Boston coach Brad Stevens said. “I thought a lot of guys did a lot of good things and I thought the guys on the bench that played both in spot minutes and in large minutes did a really good job.”

Though he missed Friday’s game with a recurrence of soreness in his foot, Gordon wasted little time having an impact on Sunday, blocking a shot by Steven Adams to start the Celtics out in transition. On the other end, Jaylen Brown knocked down a jumper to give Boston a 2-0 lead.

Gordon got on the scoreboard just a few minutes into the game when he drilled a three to give the Cs a 7-4 lead. Boston fell behind from there, but Gordon managed to tie it 18-18 with a free throw. OKC scored the next four, but No. 20 buried his second triple of the quarter to cut the deficit to 22-21.

That bucket began a 10-0 Boston run. Unfortunately the Thunder followed with an identical 10-run of their own to end the first ahead 32-28.

It was a two-point game when Gordon returned midway through the second and shortly thereafter No. 20 grabbed a rebound and found Daniel Theis in the post for a bucket to make it 44-42 Thunder. Oklahoma City stretched the lead from there, but G-Time kept the Celtics in striking range when he tipped in a Kemba Walker miss to make it a four-point game with two minutes left in the half. However, an 8-3 run by OKC to end the half gave the home team a nine-point lead at the break.

That lead stretched to 10 at the outset of the second half, but Gordon got the Celtics on the board in the third with a pull-up jumper to make it 62-54. Moments later, he found Jaylen Brown for a trey to make it a three-point game once again. Boston started to feel it from there and when Gordon kicked out to Jayson Tatum with 7:38 to go in the third, JT drilled the trey to give the Cs a 70-68 lead. Danilo Gallinari answered with a three of his own and Chris Paul scored a bucket on Oklahoma City’s next possession, but Tatum struck again from three to tie the score and Gordon followed with a pull-up jumper to make it 75-73 Boston.

After three, the score was knotted 84-84, setting up a push to the finish by both teams. Boston started out hot, and when Gordon returned with 7:16 to go in the game, they held a 96-91 lead. G-Time’s contributions to the final frame would come on the glass, where he pulled down three boards to get his total to 10. Two of those three boards led to buckets by Walker, who scored 10 of his game-high 27 in the frame.

Gordon attempted to seal the game with a layup with under 15 seconds left, but had his shot block leading to a tense OKC possession. But teammate Marcus Smart got a steal seconds later to secure the win for Boston. The Celtics have now won seven in a row and still sit third in the Eastern Conference with two games to go until the All-Star break.

“It took a lot of grit. They’re a really good team, they’ve got a lot of great players, especially their three-guard lineup. They’re tough when they’re competing so we just had to match that intensity.”

Boston closes out their road trip on Tuesday night in Houston as they take on the West’s No. 5 team, the Rockets. Tip-off is scheduled for 9:30pm ET and the game can be seen on TNT.