Gary Payton II.

Gary Payton believes his son will be due some of the NBA's new found money one day

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Gary 'The Glove' Payton is one of the greatest point guards to ever set foot in the NBA.

So now that his son, aptly named Gary Payton II, has arrived on the scene there is naturally a lot of expectation on the guard's young shoulders.

Although the Oregan State product was projected to be picked up in the second round of the draft, his name was never called. Not being drafted isn't always the worst thing for young rookies, and Payton II was destined to find his way to the NBA regardless.

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The Houston Rockets - in dire need of a new man at the point - swooped in and signed the 23-year-old to a three-year contract.

After making his debut for the Rockets in the Summer League, his father is seriously confident his son has the tools to thrive in the modern day NBA.

“With this game, you can always be aggressive here,” the Hall of Fame dad told “This is what this game has turned to, especially with guards. If he could just average 10 points, 11 points, 12 points and do the things that he can do, everything else in his game is there.

Gary Payton drives to the basket

"He’s got a good awareness of the game, he knows how to play, he gets rebounds, he throws assists, he's got a good knack for the game. That’s all you need, you don’t need nothing else.”

Payton II performed well in 10 first-half minutes against the Atlanta Hawks in Las Vegas, scoring five points and recording two assists before sitting down the rest of the afternoon.

The NBA has never been as lucrative as it is right now. In this new climate, the players who can just do servicable jobs for their teams have the opportunity to get seriously paid, and the original Gary Payton thinks that's only good news for his son.

“We watch all this money be given out to players that are only averaging eight, nine, ten points a game,” Payton said. “You got to say the same thing: 'Look at what they do and see what they do to be consistent and get yourself in that category where you can get a four-year, $80 million contract.' That’s what I tell him."

NCAA Basketball Tournament - First Round - VCU  v Oregon State

Payton II understands where he needs to develop and what he needs to concentrate on to become an effective NBA player. However, he knows it's a process and is prepared to work hard for the long haul.

“In the first game, I had to get it under my belt, get a feel for it and know I got to run a team,” he said. “I was more focused on running the team, making sure guys were in spots and came out aggressive and take early shots penetrate and look for mine, and that’s what I did in the second game.”

He's coming out of a mighty talented and legendary shadow, but Payton II might just go on to be one of the most successful undrafted players yet.

Patrick Beverley
Houston Rockets
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Trevor Ariza
James Harden

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