Although the Los Angeles Lakers roster is filled with young players attempting to guide the direction of the future, head coach Luke Walton has some veterans on his roster that continue to impart wisdom. Metta World Peace has resided as that piece on this 2016-17 roster, while midseason acquisition Corey Brewer has also done his part.
World Peace has resided in the NBA since his rookie season in 1999-2000 with the Chicago Bulls. World Peace, formerly known as Ron Artest, has witnessed the transition from the physical NBA to the more up-tempo, three heavy NBA of today.
The Golden State Warriors, with their NBA-leading 64-14 record, have also become villainized by the NBA in their own way. Once Kevin Durant shared his intentions on joining the Warriors, it seemed to put a target on their back, often facing ridicule from both players and the media.
During an interview with Colin Cowherd, World Peace stated that the competitive edge of the NBA today is the reason why there is so much resentment towards the Warriors:
“They’re too good. I hate good teams. I hate teams that are good because that means I’m losing. And I take everything personal as a basketball player, so you have to figure out a way to beat these guys, but the problem is they’re the true definition of a team. All these other players, while they’re into themselves, the Warriors were into the team. So now you’re trying to beat a team three years ahead of you.”
Often times, the NBA is stated as the professional sport that relies on player talent more so than others. Throughout the history of the game, the talented and star-studded teams tend to distance themselves from the lower-tier teams in the league, with the most talented team usually winning the championship.
World Peace would go on to say that the Warriors have fun at every other team’s expense, which is why many teams often get frustrated. He stated that although Draymond Green does talk trash, the rest of the team does not. Their unselfish play and team philosophy has them years ahead of the rest of the NBA, with 23 victories of at least 20 points this season.
Now at the end of his NBA career, the 17-year veteran has seen it all both on and off the court, demonstrating one of the more respected changes throughout a player’s career. World Peace was often sought out as a villain on the court, with one of those personality types that players only loved while on the same team.
The Warriors remained atop the NBA even during Durant’s injury absence, a scary thought for the other contending teams just about to enter the playoffs. They enter Thursday with a four-game lead over the Spurs for the No.1 spot in the Western Conference, with a few tune-up games (including an April 12 showdown against the Lakers) to get Durant back into rhythm.