Metta World Peace may sometimes be the forgotten name in the Los Angeles Lakers’ starting five, but he could hold the key to the team’s success.
The Lakers know what they will be getting out of Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard, but World Peace has always been a question mark. Even in his early days with the Lakers, people were not sure if he could fit well with the team and help them win a second consecutive title. Although World Peace, at that time known as Ron Artest, won his first title with the Lakers in 2010, he has not been the same player since.
World Peace has been criticized for being out of shape and his motivation to succeed did not seem to be there. However, towards the end of the 2011-12 season, World Peace began to look like the old Artest and his game improved tremendously. Even though the Lakers were ousted in the second round, the team got to see just how good World Peace could be if he is in shape.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports tweeted that World Peace has been working very hard this off-season and he is in amazing physical shape.
Several NBA people who’ve been watching Metta World Peace work in L.A. insist he’s in the best physical shape they’ve seen him in years.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) September 26, 2012
World Peace has the potential of being an elite defender and he can be a valuable asset to have in the playoffs when the Lakers have to face explosive offensive players. Along with the improvements on defense, World Peace has the ability of being a reliable three point shooter. Although he often times takes questionable shots, the coaches will not get upset if the shots go in.
Metta World Peace may no longer be a household name, but he can surely help the Lakers raise championship banner number 17. His defensive prowess and three point shooting are two things the Lakers will need and can use when games take on a little more meaning.
In case you missed it – Lakers Locker Room Talk chats about Lakers/Clippers and the battle for L.A.
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