NBA

Warriors set to go approve four-team trade despite Gary Payton II failing his physical

By Sports Desk February 12, 2023

The Golden State Warriors will approve the four-team trade they agreed to at the deadline, but not before filing a complaint to the NBA about Gary Payton II's injury not being disclosed.

Payton, who was a member of the Warriors' championship-winning team in 2022, left the franchise to sign a free agent deal with the Portland Trail Blazers in the offseason.

He had been battling a number of injuries that kept him out of action until the new year began, but he has since managed 15 appearances since January 2.

Payton's return to action had the Warriors believing his injury problems were behind him, and they were given no indication during negotiations that he was still struggling.

However, their medical examination of him revealed a core muscle injury that the Warriors' medical staff believe will take months to heal.

It meant the Warriors had the ability to void the deal – which was a complicated four-team trade that also sent James Wiseman to the Detroit Pistons, while the Atlanta Hawks received Saddiq Bey – but with the deadline already passed, Golden State would not be able to make any further moves.

That is a crucial point because while the acquisition of Payton was important, the Warriors were just as interested in parting ways with Wiseman. 

The Athletic reported that because of Golden State's status as a luxury tax repeater, the franchise were going to have to pay over $50million for Wiseman's $9m salary this season, and over $80m for his $12m salary in 2023-24.

With how little the former number two draft pick has proven, the Warriors decided his time with the team had run out, and they would prefer the playoff-proven Payton on a cheaper contract.

While they are still going through with the trade, the Warriors filed a complaint to the league about the Trail Blazers providing misleading information about Payton's injury status, prompting the league to launch a review.

It is also being reported that Payton was being pushed by Portland's training staff to play through his injury with the help of pain relief medication.

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