Gary Payton II will be ready to go for Game 2 of the NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and the Boston Celtics, as he revealed Saturday during the Finals media session. Payton missed the Warriors’ last 10 games in the 2022 playoffs.
Payton is moving towards getting to see action in Game 2 If needed after spending the full 48 minutes of Game 1 in the bench. In seven games, the explosive guard averaged 6.1 and 3.1 rebounds in 15.9 minutes per contest shooting 72.7 percent from the field.
Payton went down with an elbow fracture during the second-round series with Memphis. However, he will be ready to play in Game 2 if Steve Kerr decides to use him. The explosive guard was a huge part of the Warriors’ rotation prior to his injury.
“Hopefully, play 48 minutes. But like you said, I’m available, ready to go. Just waiting on the call,” Payton said Sunday.
In a question if the elbow is still bothering him, the Warriors’ guard that he’s ready to go.
“Nope,” he said. “Ready to go.”
Head coach Steve Kerr said that his defensive specialist made huge progress in the last few days, and he’s feeling better. The most complicate aspect of Payton’s injury was the fact that he hit the elbow of his shooting hand.
In his first six playoff games before going down to injury, Payton was 16-for-22 from the field and 6-for-8 on 3-pointers. The Warriors’ guard revealed his shot will be effective the same way it was before the injury.
“No, same as it always was,” he said on his shoot mechanics. “Just been soreness and stuff the last week. Like I said, we’ve got a couple more games so I’ll figure it out, but I’m ready to go.”
Game 2 of the Finals is set to take place in Chase Center, San Francisco Sunday night. The Celtics are up 1-0 after beating the Warriors 120-110 in Gm 1.