Warriors – There is still a lot of news and discussion even if the NBA trade deadline is over.
The Golden State Warriors had lodged a complaint against the Portland Trail Blazers a few days earlier.
The NBA will thus look into whether Gary Payton’s status may have been downplayed to the Blazers before their Thursday deal.
The story was initially reported on Twitter by Shams Charania, a sportswriter for The Athletics.
“The NBA has received a complaint from the Golden State Warriors against the Portland Trail Blazers,” wrote Charania.
“The league has launched a review of potential misleading by the Blazers regarding Gary Payton II’s status.”
The previous day, Adrian Wojnarowski had stated that Portland could take a potential punishment.
They run the danger of facing fines or losing future draft picks if anything irregular is discovered during the review.
“The NBA could punish Portland with a fine and loss of draft picks if an investigation were to discover ‘a failure to disclose relevant information’ on Payton’s abdominal injury that required offseason surgery and had him miss the first 35 games of the season,” wrote Wojnarowski.
“The Warriors believe they should’ve been told that Payton had been using Toradol to alleviate pain, source said, something that’s more typically done for players in the playoffs rather than the regular season.”
The most recent development in a long-running controversy involving a Payton deal between the two clubs is the Portland Trail Blazer investigation.
It also raises questions about Portland’s medical staff and its contact with Golden State.
During the NBA Trade Deadline on Thursday, the Trail Blazers exchanged Gary Payton II for five second-round picks as part of a bigger four-team trade.
The next day, according to Charania, Payton failed his physical because of a problem with his core muscles, which might keep him out for more than three months.
The four-team trade featuring the Warriors may also be at risk.
Additionally, according to Charania’s report, Payton used Toradol while playing for the Trail Blazers, something the Warriors believe wasn’t made public before the transaction.
Due to abdominal surgery he had in the summer, Gary Payton II missed his first 35 games with the Blazers.
He eventually showed up in court on January 2.
Clearing the air
In reaction to the rumors, Chris Haynes of TNT Sports tweeted a statement from Aaron Goodwin, Payton’s agent, stating that his client never received Toradol injections while competing for Portland.
At a press conference on Friday, the reports were directed at Blazers general manager Joe Cronin.
He justified how they had handled Payton’s recovery.
“Player safety is super important to us, it’s a super important thing around the league. We were playing him, he was playing. He had been cleared,” said Cronin.
“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 he was at risk, so you trust that we did the right thing, and you trust that our process was correct.”
“And these reports, I think. The clearance process was proper, so I’ll have to rely on that.”
On Wednesday, the Knicks acquired Josh Hart from the Blazers in exchange for Cam Reddish.
He participated in his first game with the New York Knicks during the controversy and offered some words of support for his former squad.
He praised the group and the trainers even though he wasn’t directly asked to by the media.
“Portland as an organization was great, Joe Cronin has been great,” said Hart.
“That organization is nothing but a class act. In the front office, in the training room. And I just want to say that that organization is respectful, a class act and does everything by the book.”
The Warriors have until 9:30 PM to accept or reject the Gary Payton II trade.
The results of their physicians eventually determine their option.
The Warriors are also discussing a four-team deal with the NBA while retaining the right to file a lawsuit over the way Payton’s medical information was revealed prior to the transfer.
Image source: USA Today