HoopsHype Gary Payton rumors

February 15, 2013 Updates

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced today, at NBA All-Star Weekend in Houston, an elite list of players and coaches, as the 12 finalists from the North American and Women's committees to be considered for election in 2013. The recognition of being honored as a Hall of Fame finalist is a career highlight in the sport of basketball. This year's list includes six first-time finalists: five-time NBA All-Star Tim Hardaway, three-time National Coach of the Year Sylvia Hatchell, two-time NBA Championship coach Tom Heinsohn, nine-time NBA All-Star Gary Payton, five-time WNBA All-Star Dawn Staley and six-time NBA All-Star Mitch Richmond. Previous finalists included again this year for consideration are four-time NBA All-Star Maurice Cheeks, four-time NBA All-Star Spencer Haywood, four-time NBA All-Star Bernard King, five- time NCAA Final Four coach Guy Lewis, six-time NCAA Final Four coach Rick Pitino and four-time NCAA Final Four coach Jerry Tarkanian. The Class of 2013 will be unveiled at the NCAA Final Four in April. NBA.com

January 17, 2013 Updates

Payton also is watching a lot of basketball. And what point guards is he watching? “I like Damian Lillard because he’s from Oakland, California, and he’s a phenomenal basketball player,” Payton said. “He should be the rookie of the year, he’s playing very well right now for Portland and I love his game. “I’ve been watching Deron Williams for a long period of time now and I like him. He is the epitome of an old-school basketball player. He just goes out there and gets it done, he’s not about being fancy, going through your legs three or four times, pulling up in your face. He just gets it done. He just gets what he has to get, gets his assists, gets his rebounds, gets his points and just gets his team to win.” NBCSports.com

Payton talked about a number of other topics with PBT as well (which you can hear more of in his own words in our Friday prodcast): On being nominated for the Hall of Fame: “It’s showing a lot of people have respected the things I’ve done in basketball and it’s showing I’ve done a lot in basketball. And I’m really happy for it. Not a lot of people can get in the Hall of Fame, it’s a great honor. I hope that I can make it.” On the NBA possibly returning to Seattle soon: “I don’t like to talk about it until it is done. Hopefully it will be there, hopefully it will come back. The Seattle people deserve it very much, they’ve been going on without basketball for seven years now and hopefully that can be done. It would be a great deal for the city of Seattle.” On defending Michael Jordan: “What you’ve got to understand is Michael Jordan couldn’t be stopped he could just be contained because he was a great offensive player. He could get to the free throw line. He could jump over you. He had great moves, he did a lot of things.” NBCSports.com

November 14, 2012 Updates
November 10, 2012 Updates

Like just about everybody else, Gary Payton believes Phil Jackson would be the best fit for the Los Angeles Lakers' coaching job. But the future Hall of Famer doesn't see Jackson wanting to come back. "Because he'd be going back into a situation where they blasted him when he left," Payton said in a phone interview with FOX Sports Florida, referring to Jackson leaving the Lakers in 2011 and being replaced by Mike Brown, who was fired Friday. "You heard all that stuff (from the Lakers) when he left that they didn't want to hire anybody affiliated with Phil Jackson's system (the triangle offense). That's why they didn't hire (then-Lakers assistant Brian Shaw). They fired everybody that was affiliated with Phil." FOXSports Florida

"The offense wasn't going and Kobe wasn't happy," Payton said. "And you got two new guys who just came in in Nash and Howard. It just wasn't a good fit. I think he didn't have the respect. You know that Phil is going to demand respect because of all the championships he won. ... I think players want to play for coaches who have produced." FOXSports Florida

November 5, 2012 Updates

Mark Kreidler: Gary Payton: Seattle hoping to have #Kings on the floor in 2015-16. He's part of group pushing for sale/relocation. #RiseGuys @957thegame Twitter @MarkKreidler

September 21, 2012 Updates

You mentioned you watch film of other players as well – who are the guys you are watching? There are obviously a ton of great point guards in this league right now and certainly there are lessons to be learned from all of them, but are there a handful you focus on the most? Jeremy Lin: I’ve watched everybody and some of the names might be shocking, but the thing is every point guard does something better than me, so the key is learning from whatever that is. Players that I’ve watched – the obvious ones: Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Steve Nash, John Stockton, Gary Payton. And then you can go on to the ones who have very specialized skills: Juan Carlos Navarro and then Chris Duhon and Raymond Felton. They do things that are really, really good and better than me that other people might not see. NBA.com

September 7, 2012 Updates

SI.com: You mention the summer with Karl and Gary. Has that season become a little bit of a cautionary tale in terms of not counting your chickens before they hatch with this group? Kupchak: Adding Karl and Payton was a big positive to this organization. The hype surrounding them coming on board, and we had a great regular-season record. But we lost in the Finals, and that's how this organization is judged. I know that's how I'm judged with ownership and the people who have grown up watching the Lakers. It's about winning a championship, not about having a great record or about losing in the conference finals or winning your division. SI.com

June 15, 2012 Updates

Chris Hansen walked on stage and was greeted with the kind of reception normally reserved for the musicians and athletes who were waiting backstage. Hedge-fund managers don't normally get rock star ovations. "I was about to tear up actually. It was inspiring," Hansen said. While former SuperSonics stars Gary Payton and Shawn Kemp got the loudest ovations, it was Hansen left accepting the most praise at a rally in downtown Seattle on Thursday afternoon to support the push for a new arena that could eventually bring back the NBA. ESPN.com

Thursday afternoon's rally crammed green and gold clad fans into Occidental Park just a few blocks north of Seattle's stadium district where CenturyLink and Safeco fields currently sit. Hansen's proposal before the King County and Seattle city councils calls for a $490 million facility just south of the Mariners' Safeco Field with nearly $300 million in private investment. MSNBC.com

"You deserve everything that is going on right now and more," Payton told the crowd. "... I'm going to be with you all every step of the way." Jerseys from every generation of the Sonics past were on display as fans dug deep in their closets to pull out old uniforms with the names "Durant," "Payton," "Kemp," "Sikma," "Brown," even a Sarunas Marciulionis jersey from his one season with the Sonics in 1994-95. Businessmen in three-piece suits added green, white and gold Sonics headbands and wristbands and came from the downtown business district to join in the event. ESPN.com

June 14, 2012 Updates
June 13, 2012 Updates

Having a similar attitude is Gary Payton, star guard on the 1996 team. He was disappointed when the Sonics left but has since directed his efforts toward Seattle getting a new team. "I don't care anymore about Oklahoma City leaving from Seattle," Payton said earlier this week on KGMZ-FM 95.7 in San Francisco. "It's over now. It could be a big difference if they're called the Oklahoma Sonics. They're not. ... People keep saying we're sad. OK, it is what it is. But it's over. So I really don't care about them leaving Seattle. We're trying to get another team in Seattle now. So that's what our main focus is about." FOXSports Florida

June 11, 2012 Updates

Gary Payton says on radio not rooting for Heat in Finals even though he won title with them in '06 & OKC left Seattle, where he starred. "The Miami Heat I played for, guys got to understand I did not make my name for this Miami Heat,’’ Payton said on 95.7 The Game in Bay Area. “I made my name for the Seattle SuperSonics. I played for the Heat one year, won a championship. That’s great. But I didn’t make all accomplishments from that team.'' So if it was a Seattle SuperSonic team I’m all for it' Sulia

February 24, 2012 Updates

But he sees something else, too—a detail that's gotten lost in the global "Linsanity" over Jeremy Lin. Something that doesn't agree with the modest narrative of the overlooked point guard sleeping on couches and beguiling New York. "He's cocky," Gary Payton said. "The cockiness in him, it reminds me of myself. The way he puts his tongue out and laughs and smiles? That's a cocky arrogance, and that's the way he has to play—and the way he should play." Wall Street Journal

Not long after, the former Palo Alto High School star was behind the Seattle SuperSonics icon's home, running on his outdoor court. "I don't work out with a lot of guys," Payton said. "It was just me, Jeremy, and my trainer." Payton, now 43, put Lin through a string of intense drills that tested his ball-handling, his shooting and ability to roll off screens. Lin did a fast-break drill in which he ran back and forth between the baskets. "He could handle the ball very well," Payton said. "He had size and jumping ability. I said, 'This kid could be good.'" Payton said he tutored Lin on the spin technique he mastered over 17 seasons en route to 21,813 career points. He also encouraged Lin—already known for his attacking style—to develop a long-range jumper. "When people back up off you, you pull up and make them pay," Payton said. He'd seen Lin take this shot in recent Knicks games. "He's pulling up with confidence and hitting that three." Wall Street Journal

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