Skip to main content

"There was only one guy whose skin you couldn't get under" - Gary Payton hailed the only NBA star who survived his trash-talking

Instead of hating, Payton took it as a man and gave his fellow NBA Hall of Famer the props
Gary Payton is widely regarded as one of the best trash talkers in NBA history, and Gilbert Arenas explains why he was so good

Gary Payton

Even to this day, Gary Payton is still a relentless trash-talker. He was arguably the best to ever do it back then, and more often than not, "The Glove" was able to utilize his unique trait to his advantage during games. In simpler terms, Payton would get inside his opponent's head and take over. However, it never worked on one player.

There was one guy

Payton's trash-talking was as lethal as his game. Once he opens his mouth and barks in another player's ear, he usually gets the desired results. Unfortunately, no matter how hard he tried, Payton never got under John Stockton's skin…ever.

"I learned trash talking from my father, growing up on the streets of Oakland, California," Payton said in a revealing interview with Marca in April. "I used it to my advantage. There was only one guy whose skin you couldn't get under and that was John Stockton."

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

But instead of hating Stockton for it, Payton took it as a man and gave his fellow NBA Hall of Famer the props. In fact, Stockton earned Payton's respect, which remains as it is today.

"Stockton was the guy I really, really respected," Payton said of Stockton last year. "I respect him to this day, and I asked him and George Gervin to induct me into the Hall-of-Fame, which they did. It was an honor for me."

Stock over MJ???

During his playing years in the NBA, Payton rivaled some of the greatest players of his generation. Having reached the heights in the 90s, "The Glove" clashed with Michael Jordan season after season. However, as tough of an opponent as MJ was, Payton, confessed that Stockton was more difficult to deal with on the court.

"I would have Jordan get mad at me and go back at me," Payton once admitted. "He knew he was talented and could do whatever he wanted to. But [Stockton] was more of a challenge to me than guarding someone that would talk back to me. When you talk back to me and say something to me, it made my game go to another level. John was one who wouldn't say anything, and you couldn't figure him out."

Just by looking at Payton and Stockton, we can already tell that they are completely opposite. One ran his mouth all day, while the other operated in a silent but deadly manner. Regardless of their differences, one thing "The Glove" and Stock have in common is that they are two of the greatest point guards ever to play the game.

Shaquille O'Neal, Charles Barkley and New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson

“It looked like me and Shaq had a baby” — when Chuck had Shaq dying laughing with his Zion comment

One year later, Zion proved he's put in the work and is leading the New Orleans Pelicans to the playoffs.

Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant and Washington Wizards point guard Gilbert Arenas

"It was intelligent trash talking, when you played him you’re playing a mental war" — Gilbert Arenas shares his experience trash-talking Kobe Bryant

Former Washington Wizards star Gilbert Arenas outlines what it was like to receive trash-talking from Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant.

Former NBA player Stephen Jackson

"They gave me a check for $25,000 cash, I blew it all in one day" — Stephen Jackson reveals he blew his first NBA paycheck

Former three-point specialist Stephen Jackson reveals how he and Mike Bibby spent his first NBA pay check in a few hours.

San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich and New Orleans Hornets guard Devin Brown

“I think we can pay you a little bit more than that” — When Gregg Popovich saved Devin Brown from an overnight stocker job

Thanks to Gregg Popovich's training camp invite, Devin Brown was able to live his NBA dream.

Dennis Rodman

"How was the nightlife with Dennis Rodman?" — questions that Chicago Bulls big man Luc Longley absolutely hated

Even those outside Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, and Dennis Rodman were annoyed with repetitive questions.

Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and NBA great Charles Barkley

“He’s been the best 2-guard in the NBA all year” — Charles Barkley reiterates his admiration for Shai Gilgeous-Alexander

Saying that Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is the best shooting guard this season might be a stretch, but don't say that to Charles Barkley.

Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young

“I don’t want the leader of my team to be Trae Young” — Bill Simmons and Ryen Russillo on all the guards they'd take ahead of Trae Young

When it comes to winning basketball, Simmons and Russillo believe that there are 8 point guards under 30 that are better than Young.