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#pounditSunday, February 12, 2023

Report: Warriors’ trade for Gary Payton II in serious jeopardy over 1 issue

Gary Payton holds a ball

Apr 10, 2022; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Gary Payton II (0) during warmups before the game against the New Orleans Pelicans at the Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

Gary Payton II’s reunion tour may be coming to a screeching halt.

Shams Charania and Anthony Slater of The Athletic reported Friday that the Warriors’ trade for Payton is now in serious jeopardy after Payton failed his physical exam. The report adds that Payton has a core muscle injury that may sideline him for up to three months. Payton’s injury was apparently discovered following a Warriors exam.

Golden State agreed to acquire the 30-year-old defensive stopper Payton in a four-team trade with the Portland Trail Blazers, the Detroit Pistons, and the Atlanta Hawks. He played a key role for the Warriors during their 2022 title run and then signed with Portland as a free agent in the summer.

The situation with Payton, who had not recently been listed as having such an injury but did have core muscle surgery over the summer, now obviously jeopardizes the other aspects of that four-team trade. That includes James Wiseman going to Detroit and Saddiq Bey going to Atlanta. Charania adds that the Warriors now have until Saturday to go through with the trade or have the entire four-team deal rescinded.

Even if the ball is in their court, the deal falling through would be very disappointing for the Warriors. They could really use the familiar Payton’s defensive energy right now and stand to save a lot of money from the trade.


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