Lakers are looking to sign Gary Payton II to two-way contract
The Los Angeles Lakers are expected to add a second-generation NBA player to their roster in the form of free agent Gary Payton II, son of Hall of Famer and former Laker, Gary Payton. This was reported by The Vertical’s Shams Charania on Sunday.
Sources: The Los Angeles Lakers are planning to sign guard Gary Payton II to a two-way NBA contract. Payton is expected to join the team in Memphis.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 15, 2018
Gary Payton II last played for the Milwaukee Bucks this season, putting up measly averages of 2.5 points, 1.4 rebounds, and 0.8 assists in only 8.8 minutes per contest across a total of 12 games, which included six stints in the starting unit.
After playing two years in college for the Oregon State Beavers, Payton applied for the 2016 NBA Draft but went undrafted. He was signed by the Houston Rockets that same year, though he was not able to make the team’s final cut. Payton would later play in the then-named NBA D-League before the Bucks signed him in April of last year. It should be noted that Payton has had a two-way contract signed before with Milwaukee, seeing action for both the Bucks and their G League affiliate, the Wisconsin Herd.
Payton averaged 14.7 points, 7.7 rebounds, 4.1 assists, and 2.8 steals per game in two seasons for the Beavers.
The Lakers’ looming addition of Payton to their fold is perhaps just a precautionary move that guarantees them depth in their backcourt in case rookie point guard Lonzo Ball gets sidelined. Lakers beat reporter Mike Trudell earlier reported that Ball is set to undergo an MRI on his knee.
Lonzo Ball woke up with a sore left knee this morning, and for precautionary reasons, is getting an MRI in Memphis today. The Lakers will send an update with the results.
— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) January 14, 2018
As a two-way player, Payton will have playing duties for the Lakers and the team’s G League affiliate, the South Bay Lakers.