Adreian Payne is an American basketball player born on February 19, 1991 in Dayton, Ohio and died on May 9, 2022 in Orlando (Florida), he played as a strong winger and pivot.
Adreian Payne, a Michigan State Spartans college player, was selected 15th in the 2014 NBA draft by the Atlanta Hawks. Regularly sent to the D-League then transferred to the Minnesota Timberwolves, a thrombocytopenia and then the sex scandals of the sports department of Michigan State University kept him away from the National Basketball Association. The strong American winger rebounded in Europe, first at Panathinaikos then at ASVEL Lyon-Villeurbanne with whom he was champion of France.
Adreian Payne was 13 when his mother, Gloria Lewis, died in his arms while she was cooking. She raised him until then alone, his father, Thomas Payne, is in prison. The young Adreian was then educated by his grandmother, Mary Lewis. With no purpose in life, he grew up rapidly at the start of his freshman year at Jefferson High School and began playing basketball. His height suddenly makes him an interesting recruit and the universities compete to recruit him.
In 2010, he joined the Michigan State Spartans in the NCAA.
In 2012, during a visit to the hospital by Spartans players, Adreian Payne befriended Lacey Holsworth, an 8-year-old girl with neuroblastoma. The player considers the child as his little sister and the young Lacey, who calls him Superman back, becomes one of the icons of the Spartans during the 2013-2014 season.
On March 21, 2014, Adreian Payne became a Michigan State Spartans legend as the first college player to score 40+ points in March Madness. In that first-round game against Delaware, Payne scored 41 points (10 of 15 on shots and 17 of 17 on free throws).
On April 5, he participated in the dunk contest, under the eyes of Lacey Holsworth, where he notably managed a 360 before celebrating his dunk in an original way. The story of friendship between the player and the young girl fascinates America. She died the day after the NCAA Finals on April 8.
On May 15, 2014, he was unable to participate in physical activities at the Chicago Draft Combine due to mononucleosis, an illness that had reduced his energy since January.
Atlanta Hawks (2014-February 2015)
Adreian Payne is expected as a first round player. If he has all the physical qualities to be one of the first players selected, the teams find two faults in him: his age - he is already 23 years old, which is considered old for a university prospect - and his lack of regularity in outside shots, especially in suspension.
On June 26, 2014, he was selected 15th overall by the Atlanta Hawks in the 2014 NBA Draft. Supported during this selection evening by his former teammate Draymond Green, Payne commemorates Lacey Holsworth by inviting her mother and personalizing the inside of her jacket in tribute to the missing little girl. A month later, after finishing the NBA Summer League averaging 12 points and 7 rebounds per game, Payne signed his rookie contract with the Atlanta franchise.
After five preseason games, he can't participate at the start of the regular season because of a plantar aponeurosis in his left foot. After missing the first ten games of the season due to injury, he was sent to the Fort Wayne Mad Ants in the D-League on November 20, 2014. On November 23, he was recalled to the Hawks roster. On November 28, he was sent back to the Mad Ants. On December 6, he was recalled by the Hawks.
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