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Gary Payton admits he and Tim Hardaway used to be so hard on their sons — “I was the same way Tim was”

Gary Payton explained how he learned to back off from always being in Gary Payton II's ear but had to mention players nowadays “always got excuses.”
Miami Heat guard Tim Hardaway and Seattle Supersonics guard Gary Payton

Gary Payton and Tim Hardaway

A legendary father like Gary Payton is an advantage in a competitive sport such as basketball. However, given “The Glove’s” reputation for talking, this wasn't always the case for his son and Golden State Warriors guard Gary Payton II.

Senior was always talking Junior’s ear off

Ideally, GP2 should be taking a few pointers from his Hall of Fame dad. But in reality, Payton Sr. admitted that the lecture sessions were unsurprisingly lengthy and tiring that his son eventually shied away from them.

According to “The Glove,” he used to be like his fellow NBA legend Tim Hardaway Sr. when guiding their sons, but he realized that it was not working, so he learned to shut his mouth a bit and “back off.”

I was the same way Tim [Hardaway] was. I pressed my son too much,” Payton Sr. told Hoopshype in 2020. “It’s one of those things where you can steer your son away from loving the game of basketball. My son stopped liking it [when he was young].

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That’s not the right thing to do,” he reflected. “So I’ve backed off from my son. When he calls me, if he calls me, I’ll say what I say and then leave it alone. I won’t even go into it anymore.

Aware of what his mouth is capable of and what he has become because of it, Payton Sr. revealed that he’s now letting his son do his own thing and only speak to him when he reaches out.

I just don’t want to stray him away from nothing,” he added. “And it is hard to listen to the caliber of father that I am, with what I did in the NBA and what I’ve become.

It’s a different era

At the end of the day, Payton Sr. still knows that he wouldn’t have lasted 17 years in the league if he was terrible at making decisions. So when Payton II secured his spot on the Warriors roster, Payton Sr. said he told his son, “you should’ve been doing this since day one” because players in this era “always got excuses.

This is a different era and they always got excuses, man,” Payton Sr. reckoned. “[He be like] ‘They should’ve let me play!’ or, ‘They let me play, but [they should’ve] let me do this or that!’ It’s not about all that. It’s about seeing what the coach wants and doing it, doing what the organization wants.

No matter how difficult it is to listen to Payton Sr. as a father and life coach, the fact that Payton II is now an NBA champion speaks a lot about how effective an adviser “The Glove” is.

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