Chicago Bulls point guard Cameron Payne is headed towards surgery on his right foot that will keep him sidelined until late November, according to Shams Charania of The Vertical.
The Bulls acquired Payne back in February from the Oklahoma City Thunder, with forwards Taj Gibson and Doug McDermott heading back in the other direction. He appeared in 11 games with the Bulls down the stretch, averaging 4.9 points per game across nearly 13 minutes per night. He also split time with the Windy City Bulls, the team’s D-League affiliate (now the G League).
Foot injuries are not uncommon to Payne, who has been hobbled since joining the league. Last July, he suffered a broken right foot for the first time, before re-injuring himself and knocking out the first two months of his season.
His NBA career began when the Thunder selected him with the 14th overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft out of Murray State, where he was the conference’s Player of the Year as a sophomore, prompting him to enter the draft.
He appeared in 57 games as a rookie, making his lone career start, primarily backing up 2016-17 NBA MVP Russell Westbrook.
Payne looked set to serve in a backup role yet again heading into 2017-18 behind both Kris Dunn and Jerian Grant. Last year’s point guard, Rajon Rondo, has signed with the New Orleans Pelicans, with the team acquiring Dunn in the trade that sent Jimmy Butler to the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The Bulls will open the regular season on Oct. 19 against the Toronto Raptors, with Payne likely to miss the first month of the year as he recovers.