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John Wall to work out with Gary Payton this summer

Aug 5, 2013, 10:21 AM EDT

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Last summer, John Wall and Gary Payton talked. The reason is that while we all remember “The Glove” and the guy who is about to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, we don’t remember the Payton who struggled to fit in the NBA.

“First of all I struggled for three years,” Payton told ProBasketballTalk last January. “Really for two years, and then when George Karl got there (to Seattle) my struggles ended because I got a basketball coach that let me do what I wanted to do… Me and (Wall) have talked a lot on the phone. He has called me about the situation, the same situation (I was in) to learn about things, and I’ve been talking to him about things and I’ve been talking to him a lot”

Now the two are going to do more than talk — Wall is going to work out with Payton this summer, reports J. Michael at CSNWashington.com (Damian Lillard also will be part of the workouts).

Wall still plans to hook up with Gary Payton, a Hall of Fame point guard who was one of the best of his generation, in Seattle before returning to train with the Wizards on Aug. 20. Plus, he had ample time to watch the nuances of Tony Parker as he led the San Antonio Spurs to the NBA finals and the Memphis Grizzlies’ Mike Conley, who helped his team advance to the Western Conference finals.

“Footwork also, just like catching the ball and working on pivots and stuff,” Wall said about what he has done this off-season in addition to refining jump shot. “Floaters. Watched a lot of Tony Parker throughout the playoffs and I see how Mike Conley added to his game after I went to two of his playoff series.”

Wall just signed a five-year, $80 million deal — now he has to live up to it. He has to get better.

Payton told PBT when we spoke that Wall’s drive was what he thinks will be key.

“With John Wall I think he understood that he has to get better and he has to go work out and he has to go improve on those things,” Payton said. “I think if he knows he’s not good at something, he’ll go workout at it. And that’s what I respect a lot about him and a lot about his game. And I know he’s going to get better because I know he’s got the mentality that he wants to get better, he wants to learn from other people, he wants to take advice from people and he wants to get better.”

  1. thekingdave - Aug 5, 2013 at 10:29 AM

    Lets connect the dots and make a prediction for next season. Wittman underachieves(when hasn’t he?) and George Karl takes over the Wizards in 2014.

  2. kb2408 - Aug 5, 2013 at 10:59 AM

    This can only make him better. I could be wrong but I think Wall is going to have a great season and put himself into the conversation of top pg next season. Before I get thumbed down, I said “put himself into the conversation”. The similarities between Wall and the Glove are obvious. The fact that he’s not only going to work with Payton, but also go against Lillard, should take Wall’s game to the next level. And improve Lillards as well. This is a very good era for NBA pg’s.

  3. sire2334 - Aug 5, 2013 at 11:44 AM

    Okay, so we all including Wizards fans have given his contract the side-eye but I swear you have to love the kids work ethic. And not just him. We talk about the laziness of this generation of players. Clearly the point guards in this league don’t make that list. They’re working hard to get better.

  4. abxyer - Aug 5, 2013 at 12:30 PM

    The Glove!
    Thanks for 2006!

  5. jeromepc01 - Aug 5, 2013 at 2:41 PM

    John Wall will continue to elevate his game when he can learn how to knock down a jump-shot consistently. Good thing he got one of the worst shooters in NBA history to help him out with that.

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