Warriors’ Gary Payton II Exercises $9.1M Option For Next Season

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Golden State Warriors Gary Payton II Exercises $9.1M Option For Next Season

Golden State Warriors guard Gary Payton II has opted into his $9.1 million player option for the 2024-25 season, according to NBA insiders. This is part of the three-year, $26.15 million contract he signed with the Portland Trail Blazers in July 2022.

Golden State Warriors’ Gary Payton II averaged 5.5 points, 2.6 rebounds in 44 games of the 2023-24 season

At his exit interview in April, Payton reiterated that he planned to work on his strength and conditioning in order to maintain his athleticism on the court. The Oregon product turns 32 this December.

“It was a rocky season,” Payton said at his exit interview. “It’s been that way for the last two seasons. Just go back to the drawing board this summer, tighten it, tune it a little bit tighter, and just kind of more bulletproof my body, take some different routes and just try to get it stronger, better, last longer.”

By exercising his 2024-25 player option, this gives Payton the flexibility to extend with the Warriors this offseason instead of becoming a free agent.

Although Payton is a key rotation player in the Warriors’ backcourt, his availability has been inconsistent in almost three of his four seasons with the team.

Last season, Payton appeared in 44 games off the bench as he dealt with multiple injuries. He missed 13 consecutive games between November and December with a right calf strain, then 16 straight games between January and February with a left hamstring strain.

Payton has been available for only 66 of 124 games since Golden State acquired him in February 2023

Moreover, the eight-year veteran has been available for just 66 of 124 games since the Warriors reacquired him from the Trail Blazers at last year’s trade deadline.

In Golden State’s 106-95 win over the Houston Rockets on Oct. 29, 2023, he recorded a season-high 15 points, four rebounds, one assist, three steals, and a block in 18 minutes off the bench.

According to Spotrac, Chris Paul has a $30 million non-guaranteed salary for next season. The Warriors have until June 28 to decide if they want to bring him back. Jonathan Kuminga is extension eligible this offseason as well.

Golden State can get $54 million under the second apron with Klay Thompson’s deal expired and by waiving Paul and Kevon Looney, per ESPN’s Bobby Marks.