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Reformed Payton playing leading Sonics role

Gary Payton never did get traded, and now he's making the Sonics happy he's around.

Updated: November 9, 2001, 10:51 AM ET
By Frank Hughes | Special to ESPN.com

I wanted to write this column early, just in case things change. But for right now, at least, through a training camp and two weeks of the regular season, Seattle SuperSonics point guard Gary Payton seems to be a changed man.

No more rants and raves against management, threatening to beat them up. No more uncontrolled tirades against teammates when they drop a pass or miss a jumper. No more petty jealousies or sitting out practices.

Gary Payton has indeed changed, and the world ...

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