Sources: Gary Payton's injury puts 4-team trade at risk

ByKendra Andrews ESPN logo
Saturday, February 11, 2023

SAN FRANCISCO -- Significant concerns overGary Payton II's physical exam with Golden State has put Thursday's four-team trade involving the Warriors, Detroit Pistons, Atlanta Hawks and Portland Trail Blazers in jeopardy, sources confirmed to ESPN.

The Warriors have until 9:30 p.m. ET on Sunday to go through with the deal or rescind the entire trade, sources told ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. No amendments to the deal can be made because of the passing of Thursday's trade deadline.

The trade had the Warriors sending center James Wiseman to the Pistons for Saddiq Bey and Kevin Knox, the Hawks sending five second-round picks to the Warriors for Bey and then the Warriors sending Knox and those second-round picks to Portland for Payton.

The concerns are tied to the abdominal surgery Payton had over the summer, which held him out of the Trail Blazers' first 35 games. He first returned in early January and most recently played 22 minutes against the Warriors on Wednesday.

Blazers general manager Joe Cronin said at a news conference Friday that Payton had been cleared to play and the team was "confident" he was healthy.

"Player safety is super important to us, it's a super important thing around the league," Cronin said. "We were playing him, he was playing, and he had been cleared and we were confident that he was healthy when he was playing. We would not have brought him back if we thought he wasn't healthy or if he was at risk. So you trust that we did the right thing and trust that our process was correct."

Payton, 30, has played in 17 games this season, averaging 4.1 points in 17 minutes. He has two years left on his deal after this season.

The Athletic first reported the trade being in jeopardy.

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