The Players Tribune and The Athletic follow NBA star Gordon Hayward's recovery and return

The Players Tribune brings Gordon Haywards comeback story to subscription-only publisher The Athletic. / The Players Tribune / The Athletic

The Players' Tribune (TPT) has partnered with subscription-only publisher The Athletic on a five-episode docuseries, Gordon Hayward: The Return.

The docuseries, produced by TPT, has chronicled the reintroduction of Boston Celtics star Gordon Hayward to the league, following a season-ending leg injury that he suffered in his first game with the team. The series, which launched on October 8, has premiered exclusively by The Athletic.

The series takes place over the span of seven months, with the TPT team shadowing the popular former Utah Jazz All-Star’s rehab and training to get his leg, and mind, back in shape for the 2018-2019 basketball season. Heyward said he hoped viewers can better understand the recovery process for athletes. “Hopefully, it may even inspire someone going through their own challenge to not give up.”

TPT, launched by Derek Jeter back in 2014, has looked to make its 2018 a banner year, first with taking its footprint global via its Fifa World Cup coverage. That international push of player-created content caused a similar stir for European football fans as when it first entered the space years ago. It also created a two-part documentary with soccer media company Copa90, and launched its first show on Snapchat during the summer.

Raphael Poplock, TPT’s executive vice president of partnerships and business development said of this attempt to evolve with consumer media habits: “The Athletic has a dedicated and enthusiastic readership, making it the perfect collaborator for us and a great platform for fans to get a behind-the-scenes look at Gordon’s incredible story.”

The Athletic’s chief executive Alex Mather added: “This collaboration with The Players’ Tribune marks the first time The Athletic is providing exclusive video to our subscribers. The core of The Athletic is great storytelling and we believe this intimate story of Gordon Hayward’s comeback will give subscribers one more reason to love their subscription.”

The series has been scheduled to air each day from October 8-12.

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