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Elfrid Payton Jr. (born February 22, 1994) is an American professional basketball player for the New Orleans Pelicans of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He played college basketball at University of Louisiana at Lafayette, where in 2014 he won the Lefty Driesell Award as the National College Defensive Player of the Year. Payton was drafted with the 10th overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft by the Philadelphia 76ers, but was then traded to the Orlando Magic. He spent three and a half seasons in Orlando before being traded to the Phoenix Suns in February 2018.

Elfrid Payton
Elfrid Payton 2014.jpg
Payton in December 2014
No. 4 – New Orleans Pelicans
PositionPoint guard
LeagueNBA
Personal information
Born (1994-02-22) February 22, 1994 (age 25)
Gretna, Louisiana
NationalityAmerican
Listed height6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Listed weight185 lb (84 kg)
Career information
High schoolJohn Ehret
(Jefferson Parish, Louisiana)
CollegeLouisiana (2011–2014)
NBA draft2014 / Round: 1 / Pick: 10th overall
Selected by the Philadelphia 76ers
Playing career2014–present
Career history
20142018Orlando Magic
2018Phoenix Suns
2018–presentNew Orleans Pelicans
Career highlights and awards
Stats at NBA.com
Stats at Basketball-Reference.com

Contents

College careerEdit

Payton was an unheralded recruit from John Ehret High School in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. He chose to attend Louisiana–Lafayette, and after a promising freshman season in 2011–12, Payton came into his own as a sophomore in 2012–13. He averaged 15.9 points, 5.6 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 2.4 steals per game[1] and was named first team All-Sun Belt Conference.[2]

After his breakout sophomore season, Payton was a late addition to Team USA's U19 World Championships Trials Roster to compete in the 2013 FIBA Under-19 World Championship. After making the team, Payton started in all nine games for Team USA, on a team loaded with talent including other players such as Marcus Smart, Aaron Gordon, Jahlil Okafor and Jarnell Stokes. The team ultimately defeated the Serbian team led by Vasilije Micić and won the gold medal, going 9–0 in the tournament.[3]

As a junior in 2013–14, Payton emerged as one of the top defensive players in college basketball. He raised his averages to 19.2 points, 5.9 assists, 6.0 rebounds and 2.3 steals per game and led the Ragin' Cajuns to the 2014 NCAA Tournament. He was again named first team All-Sun Belt and was the conference Defensive Player of the Year. At the end of the season, he was named the National Defensive Player of the Year by winning the Lefty Driesell Award.[4]

In April 2014, Payton declared for the NBA draft, forgoing his final year of college eligibility.[5]

Professional careerEdit

Orlando Magic (2014–2018)Edit

2014–15 seasonEdit

 
Payton in February 2015, attacking the basket against Pau Gasol.

On June 26, 2014, Payton was selected with the 10th overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft by the Philadelphia 76ers. He was traded to the Orlando Magic on draft night for Dario Šarić, a future first-round pick, and a future second-round pick.[6] On July 2, he signed his rookie scale contract with the Magic.[7] He made his NBA debut on October 29, 2014 in a loss to the New Orleans Pelicans. On January 16, 2015, Payton had a season-best game with 22 points and 12 assists in a loss to the Memphis Grizzlies. He was subsequently named the Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month for January and was named a Rising Stars Challenge participant.[8][9] On March 18, he recorded his first career triple-double with 15 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds in a loss to the Dallas Mavericks.[10] With a second straight triple-double recorded by Payton on March 20, he became the first Magic player to post consecutive triple-doubles and the first NBA rookie to do it since Antoine Walker, with the Boston Celtics in 1997. Payton's 22 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists helped the Magic claim a 111–104 win over the Portland Trail Blazers.[11]

2015–16 seasonEdit

On November 18, 2015, Payton scored a then career-high 24 points in a 104–101 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves.[12] Payton appeared in 116 straight games to begin his career before a left ankle injury forced him to sit out four games in early January 2016. He returned to action on January 14 in London to face the Toronto Raptors, coming off the bench for the first time in 2015–16 and recording four points and four rebounds in a 106–103 overtime loss.[13] On March 23, 2016, he recorded his third career triple-double with 20 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in a 118–102 loss to the Detroit Pistons.[14]

2016–17 seasonEdit

 
Payton defending Kyle Lowry in February 2017

On December 6, 2016, Payton scored 22 of his career-high 25 points in the first half of the Magic's 124–116 win over the Washington Wizards.[15] He bested that mark on December 13, 2016, recording career highs with 26 points and 14 assists in a 131–120 win over the Atlanta Hawks.[16] On January 14, 2017, he had a career-high 28 points and added nine rebounds and nine assists in a 114–107 loss to the Utah Jazz.[17] On March 6, 2017, he had his first triple-double of the season with 16 points, 10 assists and 11 rebounds in a 113–105 loss to the New York Knicks.[18] Two days later, he had his second straight triple-double with 22 points, 14 rebounds and 14 assists in a 98–91 win over the Chicago Bulls.[19] On March 13, 2017, in a 120–115 loss to the Sacramento Kings, Payton had 13 points, 13 assists and 10 rebounds for his third triple-double of the season.[20] On March 24, he continued his impressive run with 14 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in a 115–87 win over the Detroit Pistons. It was his fourth triple-double in 10 games and seventh of his career.[21] Seven days later, he recorded a career-high 15 assists to go with 12 points and nine rebounds in a 117–116 loss to the Boston Celtics.[22] On April 1, he had 20 points, 11 assists and 11 rebounds for his fifth triple-double of the season in the Magic's 121–111 loss to the Brooklyn Nets.[23]

2017–18 seasonEdit

Payton missed eight games early on the season 2017–18 season because of a left hamstring injury.[24] An important piece in the Magic's offense, he had 11 points and 11 assists in 29 minutes in his return on November 8, helping the team end a two-game losing streak with a 112–99 win over the New York Knicks.[24] On November 22, he had a season-high 13 assists in a 124–118 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves.[25] On December 23, 2017, he scored a career-high 30 points in a 130–103 loss to the Washington Wizards.[26]

Phoenix Suns (2018)Edit

On February 8, 2018, Payton was traded to the Phoenix Suns in exchange for a 2018 second-round pick.[27] He made his debut for the Suns two days later, recording 19 points, nine assists and six rebounds in 35 minutes in a 123–113 loss to the Denver Nuggets.[28] In his second game for the Suns on February 12, Payton scored a game-high 29 points in a 129–83 loss to the Golden State Warriors.[29] Two days later, he had a triple-double with 13 points, 11 rebounds and 12 assists in a 107–97 loss to the Utah Jazz.[30] On March 4, 2018, he had 11 points, 10 rebounds and a season-high 14 assists in a 113–112 loss to the Atlanta Hawks.[31] It was his second triple-double in nine games with the Suns—his nine games needed with the team to record two triple-doubles are the fewest ever by a Suns player.[32]

New Orleans Pelicans (2018–present)Edit

On July 9, 2018, Payton signed with the New Orleans Pelicans.[33] In his debut for the Pelicans in their season opener on October 17, 2018, Payton recorded 10 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in a 131–112 win over the Houston Rockets. Payton's minimalist triple-double made him the first player to record exactly 10 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in a single game since March 2, 2013, when Kyle Lowry did it for Toronto. It was Payton's 11th career triple-double.[34] On November 16, against the New York Knicks, Payton returned to the lineup after missing nine games with a sprained right ankle, only to fracture a finger in his left hand after eight minutes on the court.[35] He was subsequently ruled out for approximately six weeks.[36] He returned to action on December 31 against the Minnesota Timberwolves after a 22-game absence.[37] In his second game back on January 2, he scored 25 points in a 126–121 loss to the Brooklyn Nets.[38] On March 10, he had 15 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in a 128–116 loss to the Atlanta Hawks.[39] On March 12, he had his second consecutive triple-double with 14 points, a career-high 15 rebounds and 11 assists in a 130–113 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks, becoming the first New Orleans player to have a triple-double in consecutive games since Chris Paul in 2008.[40] On March 15, he had his third consecutive triple-double with 14 points, 12 rebounds and a career-high 16 assists in a 122–110 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers.[41] The next day, he recorded his fourth straight triple-double with 16 points, 16 assists and 13 rebounds in a 138–136 overtime loss to the Phoenix Suns, joining James Harden, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan and Russell Westbrook as the only players since the 1983–84 season to record triple-doubles in as many as four straight games,[42][43] and eighth in NBA history.[44] Payton recorded his fifth consecutive triple-double two days later with 19 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds in a 129–125 overtime win over the Dallas Mavericks.[45] He also tied Chris Paul for most triple-doubles in a season in franchise history with six, and became only the fifth player to record five consecutive triple-doubles, joining Wilt Chamberlain, Michael Jordan, Oscar Robertson, and Russell Westbrook.[46]

National team careerEdit

In the summer of 2013, Payton was a surprise selection to the United States team for the 2013 FIBA Under-19 World Championship. He averaged 6.1 points and 3.3 rebounds per game in nine games.[3]

Career statisticsEdit

Legend
  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field goal percentage  3P%  3-point field goal percentage  FT%  Free throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high

NBAEdit

Regular seasonEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2014–15 Orlando 82 63 30.4 .425 .262 .551 4.3 6.5 1.7 .2 8.9
2015–16 Orlando 73 69 29.4 .436 .326 .589 3.6 6.4 1.2 .3 10.7
2016–17 Orlando 82 58 29.4 .471 .274 .692 4.7 6.5 1.1 .5 12.8
2017–18 Orlando 44 44 28.6 .520 .373 .632 4.0 6.3 1.5 .4 13.0
2017–18 Phoenix 19 19 29.0 .435 .200 .685 5.3 6.2 1.0 .3 11.8
2018–19 New Orleans 42 42 29.8 .434 .314 .743 5.2 7.6 1.0 .4 10.6
Career 342 295 29.5 .454 .302 .630 4.4 6.6 1.3 .3 11.1

CollegeEdit

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2011–12 Louisiana–Lafayette 32 10 22.7 .448 .000 .564 3.6 3.0 1.2 .3 7.2
2012–13 Louisiana–Lafayette 33 33 35.5 .475 .320 .643 5.6 5.5 2.4 .6 15.9
2013–14 Louisiana–Lafayette 35 35 35.9 .509 .259 .609 6.0 5.9 2.3 .6 19.2
Career 100 78 31.6 .485 .268 .611 5.1 4.9 2.0 .5 14.3

Personal lifeEdit

Payton is the son of former Canadian Football League player Elfrid Payton.[1]

Payton was well known for his free-flowing hairstyle during his first four seasons in the NBA,[47] before cutting his hair in May 2018.[48] During his time with the Orlando Magic, his hairdo made him a fan favorite.[49]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Eisenberg, Jeff (June 18, 2013). "Little-known Elfrid Payton emerges as the surprise of USA Basketball tryouts". Yahoo.com. Retrieved May 5, 2014.
  2. ^ "Payton & Long Earn Sun Belt Basketball Honors". RaginCajuns.com. March 6, 2013. Retrieved May 6, 2014.
  3. ^ a b "ELEVENTH FIBA MEN'S U19 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP – 2013". USAB.com. Archived from the original on May 6, 2014. Retrieved May 5, 2014.
  4. ^ Iles, Trey (April 21, 2014). "UL-Lafayette point guard Elfrid Payton wins Lefty Driesell Award". NOLA.com. Retrieved May 5, 2014.
  5. ^ "UL-Lafayette's Elfrid Payton declares for the NBA draft Monday". NOLA.com. April 4, 2014. Retrieved May 5, 2014.
  6. ^ Fitzgerald, Matt. "Report: Magic Trade Saric to Sixers for Payton".
  7. ^ "Magic Sign Gordon and Payton". NBA.com. July 2, 2017. Retrieved July 24, 2017.
  8. ^ "Payton Named January's Kia NBA Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month". NBA.com. February 4, 2015. Retrieved July 24, 2017.
  9. ^ "Victor Oladipo, Elfrid Payton headed to Rising Stars Challenge". January 28, 2015.
  10. ^ Nowitzki scores 25, Mavs hang on to beat lowly Magic 107–102. Nba.com. Retrieved on July 24, 2017.
  11. ^ Trail Blazers at Magic – March 20, 2015 – Game Preview, Play by Play, Scores and Recap on. Nba.com (March 20, 2015). Retrieved on July 24, 2017.
  12. ^ Minnesota Timberwolves vs Orlando Magic – November 18, 2015 – Game Preview, Play by Play, Scores and Recap on. Nba.com (November 18, 2015). Retrieved on July 24, 2017.
  13. ^ Toronto Raptors vs Orlando Magic – January 14, 2016 – Game Preview, Play by Play, Scores and Recap on. Nba.com (January 14, 2016). Retrieved on July 24, 2017.
  14. ^ Orlando Magic vs Detroit Pistons – March 23, 2016 – Game Preview, Play by Play, Scores and Recap on. Nba.com (March 23, 2016). Retrieved on July 24, 2017.
  15. ^ "Magic overcome Wall's 52 points, beat Wizards 124–116". ESPN.com. December 6, 2016. Retrieved December 6, 2016.
  16. ^ "Payton has career highs in points and assists in Magic win". ESPN.com. December 13, 2016. Retrieved December 13, 2016.
  17. ^ "Gordon Hayward helps Jazz beat Magic 114–107". ESPN.com. January 14, 2017. Retrieved January 14, 2017.
  18. ^ "Knicks rally in fourth quarter, beat Magic 113–105". ESPN.com. March 6, 2017. Retrieved March 7, 2017.
  19. ^ "Payton's 2nd straight triple-double leads Magic over Bulls". ESPN.com. March 8, 2017. Retrieved March 9, 2017.
  20. ^ "Kings beat Magic 120–115 to snap eight-game losing streak". ESPN.com. March 13, 2017. Retrieved March 14, 2017.
  21. ^ "Payton's triple-double helps Magic rout Pistons 115–87". ESPN.com. March 24, 2017. Retrieved March 25, 2017.
  22. ^ "Thomas, Celtics hold off Magic for 117–116 win". ESPN.com. March 31, 2017. Retrieved April 1, 2017.
  23. ^ "Lopez leads Nets over Magic, 121–111". ESPN.com. April 1, 2017. Retrieved April 2, 2017.
  24. ^ a b "Magic end two-game losing streak with 112-99 win over Knicks". ESPN.com. November 8, 2017. Retrieved November 8, 2017.
  25. ^ "Butler ties season high with 26, Wolves beat Magic 124-118". ESPN.com. November 22, 2017. Retrieved November 22, 2017.
  26. ^ "Scott scores 18 in Wizards' 130-103 win over Magic". ESPN.com. December 23, 2017. Retrieved December 23, 2017.
  27. ^ "Phoenix Suns Acquire Elfrid Payton from Orlando". NBA.com. February 8, 2018. Retrieved February 8, 2018.
  28. ^ "Nuggets use big second-half run to beat Suns 123-113". ESPN.com. February 10, 2018. Retrieved February 12, 2018.
  29. ^ "Coach Kerr takes backseat in Warriors' 129-83 win over Suns". ESPN.com. February 12, 2018. Retrieved February 12, 2018.
  30. ^ "Jazz win 11th straight, beating Suns 107-97". ESPN.com. February 14, 2018. Retrieved February 14, 2018.
  31. ^ "Prince hits go-ahead 3 in closing seconds, Hawks beat Suns". ESPN.com. March 4, 2018. Retrieved March 5, 2018.
  32. ^ Phoenix Suns Stats (March 4, 2018). "Elfrid Payton has his second triple-double..." Twitter. Retrieved March 5, 2018.
  33. ^ "Pelicans sign free agents Elfrid Payton and Julius Randle". NBA.com. July 9, 2018. Retrieved July 9, 2018.
  34. ^ "Davis, Mirotic lead Pelicans past Rockets 131-112". ESPN.com. October 17, 2018. Retrieved October 17, 2018.
  35. ^ "Davis scores 43 points, Pelicans tally to beat Knicks". ESPN.com. November 16, 2018. Retrieved November 17, 2018.
  36. ^ "Elfrid Payton Injury Update". NBA.com. November 19, 2018. Retrieved November 19, 2018.
  37. ^ "Randle, Miller lead Pelicans past Wolves, 123-114". ESPN.com. December 31, 2018. Retrieved January 1, 2019.
  38. ^ "Nets build big lead, hold off Davis, Pelicans 126-121". ESPN.com. January 2, 2019. Retrieved January 3, 2019.
  39. ^ "Kevin Huerter has 27 points as Hawks top Pelicans 128-116". ESPN.com. March 10, 2019. Retrieved March 11, 2019.
  40. ^ "Bucks used big third quarter to pull away and beat Pelicans". ESPN.com. March 12, 2019. Retrieved March 12, 2019.
  41. ^ "Lillard leads Blazers past Pelicans 122-110". ESPN.com. March 15, 2019. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
  42. ^ "Jackson, Booker lift Suns over Pelicans in OT, 138-136". ESPN.com. March 16, 2019. Retrieved March 16, 2019.
  43. ^ Young, Ryan (March 17, 2019). "Elfrid Payton joins elite company after fourth-straight triple-double in OT loss to Suns". Yahoo Sports. Retrieved March 19, 2019. The only other four players since 1983-84 to record four-straight are Russell Westbrook, Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson and James Harden.
  44. ^ Beer, Tommy (March 17, 2019). "Dose: Four Straight Triple-Doubles For Payton". Yahoo Sports. Retrieved March 19, 2019. The only other players in NBA history with four straight triple-doubles are Wilt Chamberlain, Oscar Robertson, Elgin Baylor, Russell Westbrook, Michael Jordan, James Harden and Magic Johnson.
  45. ^ "Nowitzki passes Wilt but Pelicans top Mavs 129-125 in OT". ESPN.com. March 19, 2019. Retrieved March 19, 2019.
  46. ^ Abdeldaiem, Alaa (March 19, 2019). "Watch: Elfrid Payton Becomes Fifth Player in NBA History to Record Five Straight Triple-Doubles". SI.com. Retrieved March 19, 2019.
  47. ^ Denton, John (July 7, 2014). "So What's Up With Payton's Hair? It Has Significance". NBA.com. Retrieved June 24, 2018.
  48. ^ Lyles Jr., Harry (May 18, 2018). "Elfrid Payton finally got a haircut". sbnation.com. Retrieved June 24, 2018.
  49. ^ Ibarrola, Khristian Raphael (May 12, 2017). "Talking hoops (and hair) with Orlando Magic's Elfrid Payton". pop.inquirer.net. Retrieved June 24, 2018.

External linksEdit