Second-year guard Cameron Payne has hopes of broadening his niche with the Oklahoma City Thunder. However, this lofty aspiration can only materialize if Payne overcomes the foot injury that’s plagued him since March.
Luckily for Payne, his recovery seems on track. Tuesday, the rising guard was spotted going through dance numbers at a Thunder Reading Timeout with teammate Russell Westbrook.
“I'm getting back into things,” Payne told Erik Horne at The Oklahoman. “I'm shooting, jumping around, running. Everything's been going great.”
Jones fractures typically entail a six-to-eight week timetable for return. Payne underwent surgery on July 25. Next week will be just a day shy of that eight-week cycle Payne is hoping to follow.
“I hope I'm ready as soon as the first day comes,” Payne said. “But I don't want to rush anything. I want to be perfectly ready. One-hundred percent.
“It's really day-by-day, but right now, the things that we're doing, we're going at 100 percent.”
When he was unable to walk during recovery, Payne watched a "ton of film" with Thunder coaches. “It probably helped me more than working out,” he said. “Hopefully I'll be able to translate it to the court when the season starts.”
Payne also reached out to Warrior forward Kevin Durant, as Durant suffered the same injury in 2014. Payne said Durant told him the recuperative process should be quick. Payne praised the former 2014 MVP’s sage advice, stating:
“He gave me a lot of confidence going through it, even before I got the surgery.”
Cameron Payne's growth and development this season will be as enjoyable for fans as it will for the 21-year-old who is passionate about his job.