The idea of starting Matt Barnes and bringing the disruptive play of Metta World Peace off the bench makes some sense, you can see why Lakers coach Mike Brown wants to try it.
The question was always, how would World Peace react? (Yes, I get how weirdly that sentence reads, but I refuse to just to go with “we have to give Peace a chance.”)
Turns out, Peace is cool with it, as reported in the Daily News.
‘It’s going to be good. I get a chance to come in and have more responsibility, which is good. It’s going to make the other team off balance. Kobe, Pau and Bynum are going to be out and you’re still going to have to double-team me. You can’t leave me alone on the block by myself.”
Brown used an old Phil Jackson trick and made his point to Artest in front of the media, just to make the promise public.
Brown: “If that second unit ain’t rolling, who’s fault is it going to be?”
World Peace: “Me.”
Brown: “It’s on you. We’ve had this discussion a couple of times. If the second unit ain’t rolling, who am I going to come to first?”
World Peace: “Right here.”
This sure didn’t look like just another game for Kevin Durant – and not only because the Thunder beat the Warriors for the first time since he left.
The 108-91 Oklahoma City victory didn’t look like just another game for Russell Westbrook (34 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists and four steals), either.
With the shot clock off in the fourth quarter and the game tied, Grizzlies big JaMychal Green put back Tyreke Evans‘ miss with a clutch flush. There’s a very fine line between ensuring the last shot and leaving time for an offensive rebound, and Memphis threated it almost perfectly.
Emphasis on “almost.”
The Grizzlies left the Mavericks 0.5 seconds, which Harrison Barnes used to bank in a 3-pointer – off a pinpoint bounce pass by Dennis Smith Jr. – to give Dallas a 95-94 win.
The Celtics didn’t have another comeback in them.
After overcoming a 13-point fourth-quarter deficit against the Mavericks on Monday to extend its winning streak to 16 games, Boston lost to the Heat tonight, 104-98. The streak ends as the NBA’s longest since the Hawks won 19 straight during the 2014-15 season.
The Celtics trailed Miami by 16 in the fourth quarter then cut the deficit to only one with three minutes left. But Dion Waiters hit back-to-back 3-pointers, helping the Heat pull away.
Goran Dragic (27 points) and Waiters (26 points) led Miami, which needed a reason to feel good after losing three of four to fall to 7-9.
The Celtics, on the other hand, still have a four-game cushion over the rest of the Eastern Conference. This might help them regain focus.