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Report: Suns exercise team option on G Cameron Payne

Phoenix Suns' Cameron Payne, center, goes up to shoot against Oklahoma City Thunder's Kevin Hervey, left, during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game Monday, Aug. 10, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Mike Ehrmann/Pool Photo via AP)

The Phoenix Suns have reportedly exercised their 2020-21 team option on guard Cameron Payne, NBA insider Keith Smith said Thursday.

His $1.9 million contract carries with it a $25,000 guarantee for the upcoming season.

Payne joined the Suns in the NBA Bubble for the final eight games of the season.

It may have been a small sample size, but Payne showed he could be a valuable asset in Phoenix.

In eight outings, the guard averaged 10.9 points, 3.9 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.0 steals in 22.9 minutes per game off the bench. Payne shot 48.5% from the field and 51.7% from 3-point land.

Payne had five games with at least 10 points, including two games with 15 points and at least three rounds.

His best effort came against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Payne dropped 14 points to go along with six rebounds, five assists and three steals.

He figures to serve in a backup role behind new Suns point guard Chris Paul.

Payne entered the league as the 14th overall pick by the Thunder in the 2015 NBA Draft.

He was then traded to the Chicago Bulls at the 2017 trade deadline in a package for Doug McDermott and Taj Gibson. Payne was waived by the Bulls in January of last year and played out the rest of the season with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Toronto Raptors signed Payne to the team’s training camp but he did not make the final roster and was not on an NBA team during the 2019-20 season.

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