Former Seattle Super Sonic and Laker Gary Payton will be enshrined into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. Payton played 17 seasons in the NBA for five organizations and carried the nickname “The Glove” due to his defensive prowess.
Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA.com reported the news this morning via Twitter:
Gary Payton very excited yesterday after getting word he had been elected to the Hall of Fame. Official announcement coming Monday.
— Scott Howard-Cooper (@SHowardCooper) April 4, 2013
Payton played 13 seasons in Seattle before signing with the Lakers as a free agent in the 2003-04 season. He averaged 15.3 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 5.7 assists in his one season in L.A and helped lead the Lakers to the NBA Finals.
However, the Lakers were eliminated in five games at the hands of the Detroit Pistons and Payton had to chase his ring in Miami. Payton finally won his only championship with the Miami Heat when they defeated the Dallas Mavericks in the 2006 NBA Finals.
The former Oregon State Beaver goes into the Hall of Fame fourth all-time on the NBA career steals list and was one of the most outspoken players during his time. Payton butted heads with then Lakers coach Phil Jackson about his usage in the Triangle offense.
While Payton didn’t win his ring as a Laker, the 2003-04 Laker team will be remembered for having four future Hall of Famers on it. His time spent as a Laker, while short-lived, was filled with high expectations and despair. Even though he won’t enter the Hall of Fame as a Laker, it was great to have him don the purple and gold for one season.
Congratulations GP aka “The Glove” on a brilliant career and your acceptance into the National Basketball Hall of Fame.
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