Gary Payton II has been named the 2020-21 NBA G League Defensive Player of the Year.

Payton II (6-3, 195, Oregon State) led the NBA G League in steals per game (2.54) and finished second in total steals (33) to go with 10.8 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.6 assists in 13 games. He recorded nine games with two or more steals. 

On Feb. 13, Payton II matched his regular-season career high with seven steals and grabbed a season-high 11 defensive rebounds against NBA G League Ignite. He also had seven steals and added 10 points, six rebounds and six assists against the Greensboro Swarm on Feb. 26.