HoopsHype Gary Payton rumors

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

Payton said he and Lin still exchange text messages, but never truly went head-to-head on the court in their training sessions. "He basically just wanted to play me all the time," Payton said. "That was his dream. I told him: You're not ready to do that. I'm not going to give you the opportunity until you prove it." Jeremy Lin has proven a lot over the past few weeks. The mentor has noticed. "This is how fate goes," Gary Payton said. "Everybody gets hurt, he gets off the bench, and he does what he does.…He's showing he can play basketball. They just didn't know it." Wall Street Journal

January 16, 2012 Updates

Tim Duncan has scored 10 points and grabbed eight rebounds and passed another NBA statistical milestone as the Spurs have charged to a 56-42 halftime lead. Duncan moved past Gary Payton for 26th place on the NBA’s scoring list on a 20-foot jumper with 1:07 left. DeJuan Blair leads the Spurs with 12 points and Tiago Splitter has added eight as the Spurs have pounded the ball inside against the Suns. They have a 28-16 edge in points in the paint. Steve Nash leads Phoenix with 12 points and four assists and Marcin Gortat has added 10 points and a team-high seven rebounds. San Antonio Express-News

December 8, 2011 Updates

Payton’s stated goal since the Sonics left has been to get a team back in the city. And in a recent interview with SoCalSportsMedia.com after an autograph-signing in Anaheim, Calif., Payton re-stated his belief that it won’t be long before Seattle has its own team. That’s his “agenda” for the upcoming year, and he made reference to some kind of time frame that begins in September.“I want to get a team back there and I think we got a lot of people that are really on board for that,” Payton said in the interview. “We’re eligible to do that in September of next year. … We’re going to be OK. I think it’s going to happen.” Seattle Post-Intelligencer

Payton predicted shortly after the Sonics left in 2008 that the NBA would return to Seattle by 2011, which obviously isn’t going to happen. “You’ve got to go to a lot of business people, you go talk to them,” Payton told the P-I’s Gary Washburn in 2008. “We always want to talk to a lot of business people who got a lot of funds and money that we can get involved with, so it’s going slow. A lot of (former) players are trying to get something going and then hopefully we can get it done.” Seattle Post-Intelligencer

November 2, 2011 Updates

Shaquille O'Neal: Just before the start of the ’03-’04 season the coaching staff called us in and said, “No more public sparring or you’ll get fined.” Everyone knew it was simmering, but Mitch [Kupchak] never came down. Magic Johnson, who was around all the time, never said anything. But Phil was tired of it. Karl Malone and Gary Payton were sick of it. I said, “All right, I hear you. I’m done.” So what happens? Immediately after that Kobe runs right out to Jim Gray and does this interview where he lets me have it. He said I was fat and out of shape. He said I was milking my toe injury for more time off, and the injury wasn’t even that serious. (Yeah, right. It only ended my damn career.) He said I was “lobbying for a contract extension when we have two Hall of Famers playing pretty much for free.” I’m sitting there watching this interview and I’m gonna explode. Hours earlier we had just promised our coach we’d stop. It was a truce broken. I let the guys know, “I’m going to kill him.” HoopsWorld

October 11, 2011 Updates

GQ: Fine. It's safe to assume it's a big name player. Is the NBA starting to become a league of Super-Teams? Carmelo Anthony: I think people fail to realize that teams and organizations have been stacking teams since way back in the day. The Lakers had the Showtime era. Boston had six hall of famers on one team. You had Detroit, the New York Knicks, and now the Miami Heat. They were stacking their teams back then, it just fell off over the years and now it picked back up. Boston did it first, then LA. I was fortunate enough to play against them when they had Shaq, Kobe, Rick Fox, Gary Payton, Karl Malone... that's five hall of famers on one team! So you can't get mad at Miami for doing what they did. A lot of people don't agree on how they did it, or how LeBron did it. GQ.com

September 30, 2011 Updates

Xiamen University beauty Guo Jiayuan won 2011 Tsingtao Beer NBA Cheering Squad Final on 28th Sep in Beijing. She together with five other winners will receive professional training in United States and perform for NBA, reports Xiamen Economic Daily. Guo Jiayuan, a cheer leader from Xiamen University, impressed judges with her dance and finally won appreciation from Gary Payton, a former American professional basketball point guard. What's On Xiamen

July 30, 2011 Updates

Among those kids from the state were Schrempf, Donaldson, Doug Christie, John Stockton, George Irving, Jamal Crawford, James Edwards, and more recently, Jason Terry, Brandon Roy, Nate Robinson, Spencer Hawes, Jon Brockman, Aaron Brooks, Martell Webster, Marcus Williams and Rodney Stuckey. "You have pride that you have a team, but when all of that went down it broke my heart," said Hawkins, who was part of the team that played the Bulls in the 1996 NBA Finals. "It was disheartening in the fact that the fans were left out in the cold." "Hopefully, we'll get a team back because this city definitely deserves a team, with all tradition and history the Sonics have," he added. ESPN.com

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