Gary Payton II Underwent Core Muscle Procedure, Expected To Be Ready For Season

New Trail Blazers guard Gary Payton II underwent a procedure this offseason to address a core muscle injury, the team announced today in a press release. According to the Blazers, the procedure – which was performed at The Vincera Institute in Philadelphia – took place in July.

Payton’s rehab is “progressing well,” the Blazers said in today’s announcement, adding that the 29-year-old is expected to be fully recovered by the start of the regular season. It’s unclear whether or not he’ll be able to participate fully in basketball activities and scrimmages when training camp begins this month.

After winning a title with the Warriors in 2021/22, Payton signed a three-year, $26.15MM deal with Portland this summer. He’s coming off the best season of his NBA career — he averaged 7.1 PPG in just 17.6 MPG and shot an impressive 61.6% from the floor in addition to handling the most challenging perimeter assignments on defense.

Payton won’t be the only Blazer returning this fall from a core muscle issue. Damian Lillard‘s 2021/22 season ended early after he had surgery to address a lingering abdominal injury and Nassir Little underwent a similar procedure in May.

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