As the NBA investigates the Portland Trail Blazers for potentially misleading the Warriors about Gary Payton II's injury status, Golden State still feels satisfied with the trade but is hoping the league's review system does its job.
Warriors general manager Bob Myers said Monday that the organization "had a sense" by Saturday night it would go through with the four-team trade bringing Payton back to the Bay, despite the 30-year-old's failed physical that led the team to file a complaint with the NBA.
"I think once we learned that -- and I think we had a sense of it pretty quickly -- once the deadline passed, the opportunity to amend the trade was moot," Myers said. "So we just wanted to understand that better and get some clarity on that and think on that, and then, we had the time we had to make a decision, so it was just more thinking about it. But yeah, probably by Saturday night we had a sense of the direction we were going in."
Payton left the Warriors in free agency to join the Trail Blazers on a three-year contract this offseason and underwent offseason surgery for a core muscle injury shortly after signing the deal. Portland pushed Payton to play through the injury this season and gave him oral doses of Toradol to help manage the pain, The Athletic's Shams Charania and Anthony Slater reported Friday, citing sources.
Trail Blazers GM Joe Cronin denied those accusations, but the Warriors told the league office they believe the Portland withheld relevant medical information before the trade was agreed upon, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Saturday, citing sources.
And now that an investigation is underway, Golden State wants a just outcome.
"And what do I want?" Myers asked. "Whatever the NBA says is fair, whatever that is. Just want a fair result."
Myers said he isn't sure how long the investigation will take. The NBA could hit Portland with a fine and take away draft picks should an investigation discover "a failure to disclose relevant information" on Payton's abdominal injury, per Wojnarowski.
As for Payton, he'll be re-evaluated in a month, with the Warriors hopeful he can return in time for playoffs.
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Despite all the drama surrounding this trade saga, the Warriors are hopeful Payton will fit in seamlessly once again and help them defend their NBA title.
And while the investigation's outcome is out of their control, how they finish the second half of the season most certainly is in their hands.