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'Love you, PHX!': Phoenix Suns officially trade Cameron Payne to San Antonio Spurs

Phoenix Suns guard Cameron Payne (15) warms up before they play the Denver Nuggets during Game 3 of the Western Conference Semifinals at the Footprint Center in Phoenix on May 5, 2023.
Phoenix Suns guard Cameron Payne (15) warms up before they play the Denver Nuggets during Game 3 of the Western Conference Semifinals at the Footprint Center in Phoenix on May 5, 2023.

Cameron Payne joined the Phoenix Suns right before they headed to Orlando to finish the 2019-20 in the bubble amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

He left as a fan favorite who made his mark in his four NBA seasons with the team. The Suns traded him, a second-round pick and cash considerations for a protected second-round pick, the team announced Monday.

“During his tenure with the Suns, Cam brought infectious energy and joy to our team,” said Suns president of basketball operations and general manager, James Jones, in a team news release. “We appreciate him for everything he did for this organization and community. We wish Cam nothing but great success going forward.”

Payne tweeted, “Love you PHX!” Sunday with a prayer emoji.

The Suns fully guaranteed the third and final year of his three-year, $19-million contract last month as he’s due $6.5 million this season. With the trade, the Suns have a $6.5-million trade exception up until the last day of the 2023-24 regular season.

The 6-1 Payne averaged career highs in points (9.8) and assists (4.2) in 174 regular-season games with the Suns. Phoenix reached the playoffs in each of Payne's three full seasons with the team.

The Suns only have two players remaining from the 2021 finals team – All-Star Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton.

The Suns also announced their trade with Orlando in which they acquired three future second-round picks for a future first-round pick swap.

Phoenix also is signing free-agent center Bol Bol, sources informed The Republic. Bol Bol averaged a career-high 9.1 points and 5.8 rebounds last season for the Magic.

Have opinion about current state of the Suns? Reach Suns Insider Duane Rankin at dmrankin@gannett.com or contact him at 480-787-1240. Follow him on Twitter at @DuaneRankin.

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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Phoenix Suns officially trade Cameron Payne to San Antonio Spurs