Why Gary Payton II nearly applied for job as Warriors’ video coordinator

Gary Payton II, Warriors video coordinator. Imagine that.

It almost became a reality a mere eight months ago, when the Warriors guard was fighting for a spot on the NBA roster. Payton was waived by the Warriors before the season, despite finishing the 2020-21 season on the team. But after he cleared waivers, Golden State brought him back.

During that time, Payton II almost found himself interviewing for a vacant video coordinator position on the team, as he told ESPN’s Malika Andrews on Tuesday.

“I knew my chances,” Payton II said. “They were telling me my chances were kinda low of making the team. So they had a video coordinator job open. And I was trying to get in that job, trying to ask for an interview for the job just to stay around this team and be around the team and see if I can help – and you never know, the 10-day might pop up. ”

The 29-year-old had bounced around the NBA and the G-League before coming to the Warriors, so he was used to disappointing decisions.

This time, though, there was a happy ending.

“I just stayed with it, and next thing that happened they got a call saying we figured it out and I’m staying,” Payton II second. “That was no more video coordinating job.”

Fortunately for Payton II and the Warriors, there was no interview for the video coordinating job. But it came pretty close for the journeyman.

“It came very real at the moment,” Payton II said. “They cut me and the next move was like, go back to the G or try to stay here and be close to the team. I tried to stay here, close to the team and next thing I know, I’m getting a call saying you’re [on the 15-man roster]so it worked out.”

Related: GP2’s Warriors return unlocks scary new NBA Finals lineup

To say that things “worked out” with Payton II and the Warriors would be an understatement. “Young Glove” had a breakout season, averaging 7.1 points and 3.5 rebounds in 71 games, starting in 16 of them. He has made a name as an elite defender and a guard with incredible vertical abilities, with several highlight-reel dunks to his name.

He’s even started in the playoffs for the Warriors as they push toward a championship.

It’s safe to assume that Payton II will not be finding himself in a position where he needs to be a video coordinator to stay around an NBA team again.

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