Former Chicago Bulls: Cameron Payne joins Phoenix Suns

An inconsistent former Chicago Bulls point guard, the 25-year-old Cameron Payne, just signed a deal to play for the Phoenix Suns.

A former point guard of the Chicago Bulls that wasn’t all that popular during his run in the Windy City has now found another home with the NBA’s planned season restart next month at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL. Games are planned to start for the season restart on July 30, with two on the slate for that day. And that former Bulls point guard that will be getting a chance to play in the season’s restart is the 6-foot-3 and 190 pound former Murray State Racer Cameron Payne.

A report from Shams Charania of The Athletic on his Twitter timeline on the evening of June 30 announced that the Phoenix Suns signed a two-year deal with Payne. This will be the first team that Payne gets to try and make his way with since the defending NBA Champion Toronto Raptors cut him just shy of 10 months ago.

The last team that Payne actually played a regular season game with was the Bulls Central Division foe Cleveland Cavaliers. He played in nine games with the Cavaliers during the 2018-19 season, averaging 8.2 points per game, 2.1 rebounds, 2.6 assists, and 0.9 steals, in a Cavs uniform.

Prior to that very brief stint with the Cavs, Payne spent bits and pieces of three years with the Bulls. He played in 67 regular season games with the Bulls from the 2016-17 season through 2018-19 (starting in 26 of those games). He averaged 6.7 points per game, 2.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 0.7 steals, and 0.2 blocks. Payne shot 39.7 percent from the field, 33.7 percent from beyond the arc, and 77.8 percent from the free-throw line during his run with the Bulls.

In his NBA career to date, Payne registered a -2.3 box plus/minus rating, -0.2 value over replacement player rating, .044 win shares per 48 minutes, 2.2 total win shares, an 11.4 player efficiency rating, and a 101 offensive rating/110 defensive rating. He wasn’t the most efficient point guard the NBA saw in the last four or five years.

Payne started his NBA career with the Oklahoma City Thunder as their 14th overall pick in the first round of the 2015 NBA Draft. He played in two seasons with the Thunder before arriving in the Windy City. He’ll now be playing for a Suns team that finished up with a record of 26-39 prior to the season’s hiatus due to the novel coronavirus pandemic back in mid-March.