Wednesday, October 21, 2015
METTA WORLD PEACE Feature-WORLD WAR PEACE
By TIM DAVID HARVEY
Iconic like the storied purple and gold jersey his name headlines on the back, the Artest formerly know as Ron has the word Lakers proudly ink printed across the front of his chest again. Straight Outta Queensbridge, the New York native is running with Vino, Kobe Bryant again, like we only wish he was with his friend and fellow Q.B. born and raised former teammate Lamar Odom (Get well soon superstar). The former number 15 and 16th Draft Pick, that brought that same championships number to the STAPLES ceiling is back with the Michael Jackson honoring number 37 jersey again and boy its a thriller. Just like storied Sixer superstar World B. Free this once throwback, now just "back" jersey is worth more than your closet. James it is worthy of the frame above right next to your ceiling just like the STAPLES of a banner made Los Angeles rafter. The name 'World Peace' on the back of such a historic, classic and legendary Laker jersey of modern times is an inspirational statement in itself for the youth of today to rock with fashion forward purpose. The one made by the one wearing it with pride is worth so much more. World Peace is back in a league that's gone soft and with Metta in town, the city of angels most famous team in Hollywood matter again. A Laker legend returns to help Kobe hand it down to a new legacy. Metta World Peace is back and it's time for war!
Arming up in the workout facility, Metta in muscling up with a young foot-soldier ready to lead this Californian cavalry into battle. Arms and elbows are flying as two purple hearts battle over a rock like two suitors looking to engage with some beauty. This in this instance being the basket of this beautiful game. Woven in perfect nylon like those in memories cut down in the madness of the ides of March. This young kids been through the trenches and wars. He's seen all that. Now he see's the goal. The one thing standing between him and basketball immortality. If he makes it, again and again he'll go down in history as one of the games greatest warriors. Even if he is on the wrong side of the Golden State of California like he is getting on the wrong side of Draymond Green. There is another thing standing between future franchise face of the Lake Show Julius Randle and his hoop dream of basketball immorality and that is what some still underrate and think of as just another mere mortal. But this actual former 'Defensive Player Of The Year' is a worldwide basketball God...have they not checked his name? Here is a man, Metta made of real mettle who has built his legend off stopping others from making their's by making their way to the basket that hold all the fruits of the life and times of a legend with just the drop of a peach. That kind of makes him sound like the bad guy right? Public Enemy Number One? From the Malice of Auburn Hills that showed Detroit a depression of humanity to the side of James Harden's face that even left the beard in fear. But don't worry world, Ron Artest is a peaceful man now. Until he takes on the "soft" NBA he's labelled with his Charles Oakley in a Glen Davis time tough sell. Full of babies...he cries. All except Randle, who handles this game like a man whose "ceiling is as high as his destiny". How can you not love this man with quotes like that. Or like another dominating, definitive defensive player out of the fences of Indiana, Roy Hibbert calling him an "animal". It must be, in part thanks to original beast, Peace and the Artest before him, turning Randle into the next monster of the walking and fast-breaking basketball museum.
How is this guy not going to get the last spot on the Lakers 15 man roster? How is it not guaranteed? Well it might have something to do with Jordan Clarkson's former college running mate and a predatory player in his own right, Jabari Brown who knows how to run the floor and finish strong. Still this is Metta World Peace we're talking about. You've seen the Wheaties box. Here's the guy that took the shot even Phil Jackson told him not to take after his greatest miss. "Whatever"! WAP! This is the champion that met Obama and probably had a shoot around in the Presidents back yard. Playing H.O.R.S.E. with POTUS! Here's a guy whose been around longer than you could remember for teams that how could you even forget. From being the first legitimate Bull in Chicago with horns since Jordan, to a prolific Pacer, Hoosier proud or Hickory sticked. A Rocket in Houston that gave Kobe problems before they became the best of F.F's. A King in Sacramento. Even a homecoming New Yorker with the Knicks, this journeyman has made a mark everywhere...even when his passport has been stamped. This international man of mystery who has played in Europe and Asia. Ending up in Italy after almost playing for Chester of the North West of the United Kingdom of all places during the NBA lockout of all times. Still through all the teams and towns of the world Metta has said peace to he'll always be a Laker...even more than a Pacer in his great defense (it's your turn now Roy...show us what you've still got!). Just like this Panda will always be a friend of China's Blue Whales. Metta's just that all world. But we all know peace doesn't happen with at least a little fight. That's why even though M.W.P. will always have a place in the coaching staff of the Lakers along with legends James Worthy, A.C. Green and Tracy Murray, bringing their all-round offensive education to the new Russell and Jordan school of Laker greats, (like he did at the start of this Summer), going hard like an MVP he wants his spot. That's why this mid-thirties icon is diving into the crowds during a preseason game like his contract was a cast dried ink guarantee. Perhaps it will be? We're not pandering to nobody! He's still got it. A former big-time All-Star turned valuable veteran who can still bench press with the best off the pine in California (think Paul Pierce). You can't just "waive" goodbye to a guy like this. Especially with his own late career, Derek Fisher like return to a team that held the golden era of his career in a bottle of championship champagne. He should be released from his latest campaign the moment the curtain falls on the reveal of his 37 jersey next to the numbers of 32, 33 and 34. Oh yes...he's that good...and championship critical. Like Magic, Kareem and Shaq his name means that much more. That's Metta. That's goodwill. That is all-embracing. That is universal. That is the world. And that is the moment you should say "peace"!