Cameron Payne’s private workout with the Thunder on Saturday likely dispels the rumor that the team has promised to draft him if he is still available, Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman writes. Back in May, ESPN.com’s Chad Ford noted that he heard chatter among GMs that the Thunder promised Payne they’ll take him at No. 14. The Murray State point guard wouldn’t have needed to participate in the workout had the Thunder already promised to select him, according to Mayberry. Payne told Zach Links of Hoops Rumors that his goal was to be drafted as high as seventh overall.
Here’s more from around the league:
- Despite recent trade rumors, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune believes both Taj Gibson and Joakim Noah, whose contract is up after next season, will be back with the Bulls next season. Johnson, in an answer a question in a mailbag feature, does not think Pau Gasol will play 78 games again next season and the Bulls therefore would need the frontcourt depth as a result.
- The Pistons‘ acquisition of Ersan Ilyasova signals that the team, under president of basketball operations and head coach Stan Van Gundy and GM Jeff Bower, isn’t afraid to pull the trigger, Vincent Ellis of The Detroit Free Press writes. The Pistons have made four trades since October, as Ellis points out.