Orlando Magic guard Elfrid Payton is currently in Manila to grace the annual jr. NBA/jr. WNBA Philippines National Training Camp which starts today at Don Bosco, Makati.
During a media availability session Thursday afternoon, the third year pro shared his thoughts on the challenges faced by being on a young team, and the things he wants to work on during the offseason.
Being with the Magic and having no superstar like Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Kevin Durant, or Steph Curry to begin with when he was drafted, Payton said it provided an extra challenge for him and his fellow newcomers.
“It’s tough. There is nobody there to kind of show you the ropes. You have to figure it out yourself. But you know, it makes the journey that much better,” he said.
Payton was drafted 10th overall by the Philadelphia 76ers in 2014 before being traded to the Magic for Dario Saric. The Magic also drafted Aaron Gordon that year.
“It might take a little longer but that makes it that much better,” Payton said, also mentioning the situation entails having to do more as a young member of the team.
“Yes, there is a little bit more responsibility, but I think it is a challenge that we all accept.”
Payton personally has began working out while most NBA teams are still off, or playing in the postseason.
“It’s been good. I’ve been working a little bit but for the most part, I’ve been out, in and out for three weeks, letting my body recover from the season,” he said.
As for the aspects of the game he wants to improve on, Payton said: “I wanna work on getting stronger, finish at the basket, and continue to work on my jump shot.”
Payton shot only 42 percent overall from the floor last season and has never hit above 33 percent from the three-point area in his three-year career. He makes 55 percent of his attempts from 10 feet or less, per NBA Stats.