Magic's Elfrid Payton: Delivers strong outing in 29 minutes off bench

Payton came off the bench and finished with 16 points (6-9 FG, 1-3 3Pt, 3-4 FT), three rebounds, three assists and one steal across 29 minutes in Sunday's 104-96 loss to the Bucks.

Payton responded well to the demotion to the bench with his best scoring effort since Nov. 13, but the third-year point guard may still be in coach Frank Vogel's doghouse after averaging 8.8 points (on 40% shooting from the field), 5.7 rebounds and 4.5 assists in 28.5 minutes per game in the six contests before Sunday. With his three-point shooting not showing the improvement the Magic expected at this stage of his career, Payton may not be viewed as the team's long-term solution at point guard, so there's some justifiable concern he could stick on the bench beyond Sunday. If there's a silver lining, it's that he still saw a healthy minutes load, outpacing his replacement in the starting lineup, D.J. Augustin (25 minutes), in playing time.

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