Milwaukee Bucks: Gary Payton II among Yao Ming charity game participants

HONG KONG, HONG KONG - JULY 30: Gary Payton II /

Milwaukee Bucks guard Gary Payton II was among the NBA players who competed in a charity game in Hong Kong for Yao Ming‘s foundation.

As is now tradition for the offseason, the summer to date has brought Milwaukee Bucks fans no end of stories of the team’s players competing, speaking and visiting countries around the world.

Giannis Antetokounmpo and Matthew Dellavedova have gained the most attention for their respective trips to Asia, but another less experienced Buck also made a visit to that continent earlier in this week to compete in a charity game on behalf of an NBA legend.

Gary Payton II was among the NBA players to visit Hong Kong earlier this week for an exhibition game staged by former Houston Rockets big man Yao Ming’s Yao Foundation.

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The 24-year-old was joined by fellow NBA players, such as Vince Carter, J.R. Smith, Willie Cauley-Stein, Trey Lyles, Justin Anderson and Bobby Portis on a team of US stars who were matched up against a team of Chinese professionals.

The event was somewhat marred by the withdrawals of the San Antonio Spurs’ Dejounte Murray and Golden State Warriors’ Patrick McCaw, as the game was originally billed as including players from the Spurs and Warriors.

Payton II was in fact a last minute replacement for Murray, while Carter stepped up to fill the void left by McCaw.

In the run-up to the game, Yao Ming acknowledged the disappointment factor for some local fans, but also took the time to thank the players who were making the trip.

"“I know celebrity effect plays a big part in charity promotion,” Yao said. “Therefore, I sincerely thank all the NBA stars who sacrificed their personal time to fly across the ocean for the match.”"

As for the event itself, the 11,000 arena was said to only be “two-thirds full“. Still, the local press highlighted the entertainment on offer, and while Vince Carter’s dunking seemed to be the biggest attraction, GPII’s “goal-scoring skills” were also noted by the South China Morning Post.

It’s already been a busy summer for Payton II, who was one of the stronger performers on the Bucks’ Summer League squad in Las Vegas.

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With a non-guaranteed contract for the season ahead, although Payton II has demonstrated his abilities to the Bucks, he faces a nervous wait to see if he’ll in fact be remaining in Milwaukee and the NBA next season.