Will Metta World Peace’s Suspension Cost The Lakers A Shot At The NBA Title?
Boy, the Lakers are lucky. Not because Ron Artest Metta World Peace was suspended for 7 games after delivering a “Macho Man” Randy Savage-sized elbow on James Harden. That part sucks. Where they (perhaps) lucked out is their placement in the first round of the NBA Playoffs where they will draw the Denver Nuggets instead of the red hot Memphis Grizzlies. Either way, however, Metta World Peace’s suspension is yet another issue the Los Angeles Lakers have to face heading into the playoffs.
This has been a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde type of year for the Lakers. From the Chris Paul trade that never happened, Andrew Bynum‘s brilliance to baffling transgressions and Mike Brown‘s seeming inability to keep the band together, to their occasional flashes of genius as a team and the fact that they landed the #3 seed even though everyone had them shoved behind the Los Angeles Clippers; it all has us scratching our heads heading into the post season. When Kobe Bryant sat out with an injury, it appeared that the Lakers were destined for that #4 or #5 seed. But good ol’ World Peace swept through and had a remarkable resurgence as both an offensive and defensive player in April.
And then he goes and clobbers Harden with an elbow to the dome.
That’s just the type of season the Lakers are having. Now they will enter the playoffs a man short and that man is the one that contains offensive threats. Fortunately, the Nuggets are steamrolling into the playoffs like the Grizzlies. Nobody wants to play that team right now. They excel in the areas where the Lakers falter (point guard) and have the size to bang on the inside. The Nuggets aren’t as dangerous, but they certainly will give the Lakers problems in the first round. Aside from World Peace being suspended, Ramon Sessions has been in a funk and the bench has been putrid.
However you look at it, this is the last thing the Lakers needed to happen. It doesn’t matter who they are playing, they haven’t been consistent enough for any fan to feel comfortable rolling into the playoffs. Without MWP, their chances are 50/50 at best.
And if you’re a Lakers fan, that’s not good enough.