Maybe Elfrid Payton Will Be Good Now That He Can Actually See

Bryan Brandom
(Photo: Snapchat / Getty Images)

For the first time in his NBA career, Elfrid Payton went up against the clippers.

The hair clippers.

Unless he’s pulling a late April Fool’s joke, the Phoenix Suns guard recently cut the infamous Elfrid Payton haircut we’ve all come to know and be confused by. It’s apparently his first trim since high school.

Good to know the man won’t let a trade ruin his relationship with a perfectly fine pair of sweats.

Payton entered the NBA branded as a playmaker and a defensive menace.

But after four years in the league the man still can’t shoot. Which might have something to do with the mop that used to block the upper half of his field of vision, or sometimes, as it did on this air ball against the Nets, the entirety of his vision.

While the point guard’s box score stats have been fine, Payton has yet to contribute to winning basketball. That has a lot to do with the talent around him — the Magic have been garbage since he entered the league, and the Suns had the NBA’s worst record in 2017-18.

During his time with Orlando in 2017-18, the team’s net rating (point differential per 100 possessions) was a hefty 7.1 points better when he wasn’t on the floor.

Following a midseason trade to Phoenix, the Suns’ net rating was a depressing -20 with Payton on the floor. They were 13.5 points better with him on the bench.

Maybe (definitely) the doubling of his field of vision will have a positive effect on his future production.