World Peace Says Kobe’s Desire To Play Longer Influenced Dwight’s Decision

World Peace Says Kobe’s Desire To Play Longer Influenced Dwight’s Decision


nl_lakers08Throughout the process of Dwight Howard’s free agency earlier this summer, former Laker (via amnesty) Metta World Peace always claimed that the center would return to Los Angeles.

However, as time has passed since Howard made his decision to sign with the Houston Rockets, a little light has been shed over his reasoning to leave the Lakers and his experience with the team in his lone season with the purple and gold.

In a new interview with the L.A. Daily News’ Mark Medina, Metta World Peace shares how he knew that Dwight was going to choose the Rockets after Kobe Bryant made it publicly known while he was in Brazil recently that he wants to play past his contract expiration date, which is at the end of the upcoming season. In fact, Kobe claims that he can see himself playing an additional three to four years.

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As Metta shared with Medina on the set of a Hallmark Channel series in Los Angeles:

“I always knew Dwight was going to Houston. Things weren’t clicking. Once Kobe said he could come back for three years, I knew Dwight was going to Houston.”

While there have been reports and assumptions that Dwight Howard wanted to be the immediate face of the franchise and didn’t want to play in Kobe’s shadow in Los Angeles, Metta offered the following reasoning:

“It’s not about being the guy,” World Peace said. “It’s about clicking. Dwight never wanted to be the guy. Dwight did have some flaws just like anybody. Everybody has flaws. But Dwight just wanted to be comfortable. He wasn’t comfortable [here]. But once that happened [with Bryant’s comments], I knew Dwight wasn’t coming back. I knew he wasn’t going to come back.”

Team chemistry is such a valuable intangible that determines a team’s success or failure. Going into last season, the Lakers were the favorites to win the championship for most, at least reach the Finals for others. Enormous expectations were placed on the 2012-13 Lakers team simply because of their talent. Of course, the massive amount of consistent injuries played a role in their struggles, but the lack of chemistry played its role as well, as Metta pointed out:

“Our team needed to have chemistry right away. We should’ve because we’re all vets. It’s a shame that we didn’t.”

The Lakers are in a bit of a rebuilding phase as the franchise looks to build a competitive roster on a tighter budget, which is unusual territory for the organization. While this season’s expectations are drastically different than last year’s, the Lakers and fans are also looking to move on from the Dwight situation.

The Lakers’ front office has done a solid job of signing free agents so far this offseason considering the limited financial contracts they can offer. What has been most refreshing for the fans and the franchise to hear has been the reoccurring theme from every new player signed, which is that they want to be here and took less money to be a Laker. Team chemistry is already improved.


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  • Daryl Peek

    Metta is absolutely right! I’ve always loved his candor.

  • michael_battaglia

    I call bs. I think Dwight never wanted to come to LA, and was planning all along to go to Houston, Kobe couldn’t have done a damned thing to change that. Even if it is true, it’s Kobe’s prerogative to say whatever his hopes and intentions are for himself, he has no need or reason to temper his words or “keep Dwight in mind” when he’s talking about his own damn self, it’s not his problem. If Kobe talking about his own intentions was the thing that pushed Dwight away, then Dwight is far more absurd than anyone even dreamed of, and Metta looks like a chump sticking up for that garbage.

    • Hooper

      But……kobe still can’t win it all by himself. Never has. He needed dwight even though he and no other laker fan will say it, he just needed dight to be more aggressive and consistent. And I’m sure you will get an urge to go off on me as well. But regardless of everybody’s personal feelings about dwight, dude is a hell of a center, especially when healthy. If kobe really wanted him there, a mature nba veteran wouldn’t watch what he says for dwight, he would be smart and do it for the franchise. I will watch the lakers even after kobe retires unlike a lot of unwelcome laker bandwagoners, so I’m hoping my lakers put themselves in a good position longterm, its about the big picture and kobe doesn’t seem to worried about that. My only problem with kobe is that he comes off extremely selfish sometimes. Kobe’s timing with his comments are worse than his actual comments at times, which almost make it seem like he plays head games. Why is he telling the media he can play another 3 years when he hasn’t even played full contact basketball and doesn’t even know what his limitations will be yet? And why couldn’t he wait to see how his body reacted to the injury at least, wait until dwight resigns then say that? It’s not even logical for him to say stuff like this when he originally told dwight the team would be his in a season or two. I’m just looking at the big picture instead of it as, kobe and dwight couldn’t work it out so dwight up and left. There’s always more to it. And Kobe is going to retire soon, there is no reason for him to be crippling the franchise that has treated him so well over the years. Him talking about not taking a paycut next year when the lakers need him to most and the fallout with dwight & shaq makes me wonder how much this guy truly wants to win, kobe has to realize rings aren’t always gonna be handed to him on his terms. And back to my point now that dwight is gone, whether Kobe or the whole laker fan base is happy about it, optimism is great, but it is going to be Much harder for the lakers to get players like lebron and melo to turn down better situations they are already in to come play in la without dwight or a foreseeable future.

      • Paytc

        There does take a level of selfishness to be great.

        if everyone knew and were taught that,we’d have more standouts and less mediocracy.It’s not popular to teach it because so many lack the skill required to be great.”someone once said that the human race is fixed,not to prevent the strong from winning,but to prevent the weak from losing”Earl Nightingale

        I agree with Michael Battaglia’s comments above….

        “if Kobe talking about his own intentions was the thing that pushedDwight away,then Dwight is far more…….”

        If someones words can push a 7 foot 300 pounder away….. then that person must be hella powerful or the 7 footer super weak?? I personally question the so call “superman”

        MWP is still alright with me.He is know longer a Laker but went to battle every night when he was.I understand the bitterness business can cause.If it were my choice MWP would still be a Laker.

      • DontBiteTheHandThatFeedsYou

        Kobe need helps, LeBron needs help, Jordan needed help. Magic, Kareem and all the Champions needed and will need help NO ONE CAN OR WIN IT BY THEM SELVES. So its utterly pointless for you to say “kobe still can’t win it all by himself”

        Now you are talking about Kobe taking a pay cut!? are you out of your mind!? have you seen how Kobes contract is constructed? HE TOOK less money at the beginning of his last contract (this is his last year) so the Lakers can sign the likes of Gasol, Metta, Odom and so on. He earned every single penny of his contract. The Lakers are a $1 billion worth franchise, do you think the Lakers will too take a pay cut by selling us the tickets cheaper? or charging us less for the food and drinks? the answer is not, never have, never will.

        Now, if its true, that all it took Howard to leave, were some comments! I’m glad he’s gone. Not everyone player is cut to be a Laker. Howard is not a top 5 player in the NBA at all… LeBron, Kobe, Duran, Westbrook, Kevin Love, Carmelo, Chris Paul, Wade, Russel Westbrook, Rajon Rondo, Darren Willians and so on… and never mind all the upcoming the young bloods. Kevin Love puts up way! better numbers than Howard…

        HOW DARE YOU!!! question Kobe’s will to win “makes me wonder how much this guy truly wants to win” name a single player or franchise that has won more rings than Kobe during his era? who? THANK YOU!!! this is the saddest and most ridiculous thing i have heard of Kobe.

        • Paytc


          I totally agree with you !

          And what’s even a more troubling fact, is Kobe has done enough to win 8 or 9 rings.Kobe is doing his part.He continues to do more than enough.But everyone else must do their part to include the GM,coaches,starters,and bench players.

          Sometimes less is best.Carry away all the dead weight, and parasites.Bring in a group that all want to be personally accountable.Not jealous excuse making finger pointers.It’s the Lakers man! We set high standards for everybody here.

          Oh and where is my check too…..for doing my part LOL…….

          Go Lakers!

      • Collins Ace-Dopamine

        so im guessing u expect people to read all this.

      • Jim213

        Hooper, you bring up some valid points, one DH is a good center but this doesn’t mean that he’d fit (chemistry wise) within any team. IMO the reason DH came was b/c of Phil, he believed management would’ve brought Phil back with his arrival. We know some factors that caused him to leave but I seriously think plan C will be better than managements plan A & B=DH.

        But managements bad moves this past year leaves things to doubt today and in the future. The best thing is to stay competitive through solid depth acquisitions to appease the fans and business now. I call your belief of Kobe selfishness, PRIDE from one of the most competitive players today. There’s a lot of haters out there who hate the team b/c of our history. IMO Kobe takes all this negativity with a grain of salt and tries hard to put his best foot forward to help keep the BRAND a the top.

        Kobe pretty much tells things as is and given the media’s demand of the team many people look for controversy to keep things fresh. I’m positive that Kobe wants to retire as a Lakers so the best business decision will likely take place for the well being of the franchise and its future. Like yourself I’ll still be around if the Lakers happen to experience a decline but it’d likely be b/c of management decisions. We’re a top global brand and to stay there management needs to place the best team possible even with the current cap.


        Management needs to put the best team forth today and in the future given that the NBA will be screwing the top valued/profitable teams from now on with their revenue sharing modifications. The Lakers as one of the top BRANDS in the NBA will have to DISH OUT between $50-80 million in revenue sharing. So Jim Bust will need to seriously consider his decisions for the future otherwise they’d stand lose more $$ with a mediocre team given a decline of demand.

        With this said the NBA is a business and not everyone gets to profit from it as some SUPERSTARS do and have done. Aside of the franchise the overall league benefits too from the most successful franchises in the league. Thus Kobe has done more for the league (marketing and $$$ wise) than what he earns today.

        Without Kobe’s help the Lakers wouldn’t have won 5 rings since the millennium and we’d likely wouldn’t have the masses of fans and (band wagoners) if it wasn’t for our competitive play and winning tradition. It’d be nice to get an estimate $$$ of Kobe’s overall contribution to the game itself. There’s only a few players that have had such an impact to the overall game and global business.

        I’m positive that both management and Kobe will do what’s best for the franchise given that the Lakers will take a hit (revenue sharing) as management will NEED to place the most competitive team on the floor given that the family business will stand to lose millions if management fails to keep the BRAND a the top thus resulting in a decline of demand and $$$.

  • fern

    I’ll take KOBE “G” over Howard any day of the week . Screw that diva12

  • Chris

    It’s because Kobe called Dwight out and diva12 didn’t like it.

  • bossplayer

    Dwight need to listen to KG winning a title takes sacrifice as a
    Competitor I would have never left LA Kobe does take too many shots sometimes but he has a heart of a Champion and Dwight needed to learn what it takes to win a title. He will not win a title in Houston lol

  • ra

    OK, maybe we’re spending too much time on “The Decision II”. Let’s talk about decisions for a second (and then maybe not worry about it anymore).

    Decisions are usually made, and usually come into play, when there are ‘evenly balanced choices’. I.e., if you have to ‘decide’ between 2 things, then chances are they are two ‘good choices’. So, judging from how DH looked at the beginning of the season, he was seriously considering the Lakers as his home. There was no ‘decision’. He had already made it.

    After the season was over, several elements came into play that changed that. So, the Lakers became only ‘one’ of several choices, and again, an evenly matched choice. When it comes down to that, then what usually happens is that an ‘X-factor’ comes into play that sways the decision more toward one choice. It has to be done anyway.

    So, perhaps Kobe was ‘one’ of the ‘X-factors’, and there were others too, I’m sure. It was an official ‘Decision’. There was no obvious choice. DH himself said that he ran into about 5 people from Houston, while he was in Colorado. He said he considered that a ‘sign’ that he should go to Houston. Superstitious? X-Factor? Who knows.

    But really, who cares. DH turned from having already chosen the Lakers to then having several choices in a decision.

    Again, who cares now. It’s over.

    BUT, if anything that comes out now (including MWP’s statement) that attacks the Lakers NOW, then of course we have a right to defend that. If this is meant as a slight to Kobe, then screw that. Kobe has been GOOD to LA, and the Lakers. He can do whatever he wants here, and whatever he can. Everyone else comes in second, period.

  • Lakers Always

    Whew! Kobe saved us, again? Thank you Kobe for rescuing us from the Drama-Mama named Dwight.

  • x factor

    was howard going to score 30 points a night of the lakers i don’t think so

  • Teflon Sean

    Whatever, I can’t wait to see what the Lakers pull off AFTER Kobe retires!! Getting rid of that heartofaloser was the best thing that could have happened to the team long term, I been a Laker since before the 80’s and will always be. I BLEED PURPLE AND GOLD TRUE!!

    • Jim213

      LOL… I agree if you’re talking about DH. Plan C for management will have better acquisitions than the potential bad investment in DH.

  • cletus the fetus

    LA sucks circa 2007 when kobe wanted out. the clip show is the new LA team

  • My Info

    i said that before howard made up his mind ,howard wants to be first choice cn not be done while kobe on the same team and when kobe tweeted that he wants to play longer ,that did it.that was factor # 1.lakers should have a meeting between the two at the same time and said to kobe that howard is the face of the franchise right in howard presence ,howard would have stayed