A special guest is slated to appear and speak at the Hawaii men’s basketball postseason banquet on April 29.
That’d be Basketball Hall of Famer Gary Payton, Seattle SuperSonics legend. That was per UH coach Benjy Taylor on Friday.
“The Glove,” so named for his defensive abilities at the point guard position, apparently became a fan of UH hoops and its frenetic defensive style over the course of the 2014-15 season.
“He’s going to talk at some point. We’re going to have a meeting on Monday about the logistics and how we’re going to do it,” Taylor said.
“Since our thing was defense this year, why not bring in one of the best?” the coach said. “(Defense was) our bread and butter and why not try to get one of the best in the game at that? It’s going to be a great night. It’s a special season. It’s going to be a special banquet. Having him come do this for us is a tribute to some of the national recognition we’ve received. He’s a fan.”
Taylor said he secured Payton as a guest “just through friends and connections.”
“He jumped at the opportunity and we’re blessed and fortunate enough to have him come in,” Taylor said. “He’s a fan of UH basketball now and he follows college basketball. It just worked out, and we’re excited to have him.”
Payton’s son, Gary Payton II, plays at Oregon State.
If you’re looking to sign up for the Sheraton Waikiki Hotel team banquet, you can do so here. Individual tickets are $150.