Ex-Spartan Green honors late friend, ex-teammate Payne in Warriors' victory
Golden State Warriors star Draymond Green paid tribute to his friend and former teammate Adreian Payne during Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals against the Memphis Grizzlies on Monday in San Francisco.
Green wore shoes with the words “Long live 5” and "RIP AP" to honor Payne, who was shot and killed in Florida early Monday morning.
Payne, who was the 15th pick by the Atlanta Hawks in the 2014 NBA Draft, was 31.
Green scored two points with 11 rebounds and five assists in the Warriors' 101-98 victory to take a 3-1 lead against the Grizzlies.
After the game, Green said that he and his wife, Hazel, will donate $100,000 to a fund in Payne’s name. He urged his fellow MSU alum in basketball to do the same, including coach Tom Izzo, Magic Johnson, Miles Bridges and Jaren Jackson Jr.
The former Spartans played two seasons together at Michigan State. Payne averaged 16.4 points and 7.3 rebounds per game for Michigan State and led the team to the Elite Eight during the 2013-14 season.
The 6-foot-10 forward played four seasons in the league with multiple teams. Following the 2017-18 season, Payne never played in the NBA again but spent the last few years of his career playing overseas.