Kurt Helin

Entering 17th NBA season, Metta World Peace says he wants to play 20

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Metta World Peace is a longshot to make the Lakers roster this season. Los Angeles already has 14 guaranteed contracts plus the very team friendly deal of Yi Jianlian, who has looked good in camp and will almost certainly make the roster. That makes 15, the max the Lakers could carry into the season. Meaning World Peace only sticks with the Lakers if there is a trade or the Lakers cut someone with a guaranteed deal to keep him.

But World Peace wasn’t expected to make the Lakers roster last season and did. If he sticks, this would be MWP’s 17th NBA season, and he told Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News the real goal is 20 years.

World Peace, 36, enters his 17th NBA season and 18th playing professionally overall hoping he can log at least three more years on the hardwood.

“I want to finish off strong,” World Peace said. “It’s not about what it will mean to me. It’s about, ‘Can I get there?’”

World Peace said he isn’t worried about making the Lakers’ roster.

“My concern is having a good time. There’s nothing to overcome,” World Peace said. “I’m a hell of a basketball player. That’s the hard part, becoming a good basketball player. Once you do that, you don’t have to worry about nothing else.”

That’s one less thing to worry about.

World Peace got in just 35 games for a 17-win Laker team last season. He did start the first last Laker preseason game with Luol Deng out but didn’t score in limited minutes. One way or another I expect World Peace will get paid to play basketball this season, just not sure it’s with the Lakers. Or maybe in the NBA (remember he did spend a season overseas before the Lakers brought him back last season).

But if he’s not in the NBA the league is less interesting, so I’m rooting for him to stick around.

Pistons’ Reggie Jackson to get platelet-rich plasma therapy on problem knee


Reggie Jackson has been here before.

Jackson is out to start the season due to tendonitis in his right knee, and once again the Pistons’ point guard will have platelet-rich plasma therapy to treat it, reports Aaron McMann of MLive.com.

The Detroit Pistons point guard will receive a platelet-rich plasma injection Monday in New York, coach Stan Van Gundy confirmed, the same non-surgical procedure he underwent while dealing with knee tendinitis in 2011.

The procedure culls blood from the body, spins it and injects it into the affected area to help relieve pain. There is no word yet on a timetable for Jackon’s return, but Van Gundy said last week it could be up to six to eight weeks.

“It’s a significant amount of time,” Van Gundy said. “He’s played a lot of games and a lot of minutes. He has a good confidence in (this procedure) – nothing is forever, but that’s something that worked really for him before. I think he feels good about it.”

Traditionally with this therapy, Jackson would be on crutches for 7-10 days after the treatment, followed by rehab. Timetables are never perfect, but this could be closer to six weeks than eight.

The sooner he returns the better for Detroit. Jackson running the pick-and-roll with Andre Drummond is at the heart of the Pistons’ offense. It’s not going to be the same with the ball in Ish Smith and Lorenzo Brown‘s hands. This is a setback for a team with playoff ambitions this season.

As a good coach should, Jason Kidd comes to defense of Michael Carter-Williams


Reports surfaced Friday that Milwaukee had spoken with Sacramento trying to push a Ben McLemore for Michael Carter-Williams trade, one the Kings had no interest in. Rumors about Michael Carter-Williams availability have been swirling since this summer. That there have been no takers led to a discussion of MCW’s flaws and game (including by myself), something Carter-Williams seems to have taken as motivation.

Like a good coach should, Jason Kidd came to Carter-Williams’ defense, in an interview on Sirius XMNBA Radio.

“Rumors are just part of this business. We’re happy with Michael (Carter-Williams). He’s had a great summer and has worked extremely hard and it showed in the first game in Chicago. He came off the bench and I think he led us in rebounds. He can be one of the best wing defenders in this league. He helped us late in the game running the team at the point guard position. There’s always speculation around different guys, but I think Michael is going to help us win.”

Kidd is right about that — speculation and trade rumors, not to mention trades themselves, are just part of the business. Nobody says it is easy, but most veterans get a thick skin and learn to deal with it. Same with criticism of their game — everybody in the NBA is an amazing player, one of the 450 best in the world, and that shouldn’t be forgotten. The critiques of players games are in the context of the NBA — and those can feel harsh in that small window.

None of that changes the fact MCW is available via trade and that is an open secret around the league.

Andrew Wiggins wants to posterize Joel Embiid

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Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid were teammates at Kansas who went No. 1 and No. 3 in the 2014 draft — then have not played one game against each other in the NBA. Foot injuries have sidelined Embiid for two full seasons, he finally has gotten on the court a little this preseason.

Embiid already has a target on his back — Wiggins wants to dunk on him. From an interview on Fox Sports where Wiggins was asked who he wants to posterize:

My boy JoJo Embiid from the Sixers. I never got him (as teammates) in college; time to get him now.

Embiid is out there to protect the rim, which means he’s going to get dunked on now and again. Happens to everyone who actually tries on defense. Wiggins puts people in posters. This could happen.

If it does happen, the Sixers may be okay with it — that means Embiid is healthy, playing, and trying to protect the rim.

(Hat tip Eye on Basketball)



Clippers’ rookie Brice Johnson has herniated disc, out indefinitely

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The Clippers drafted Brice Johnson 25th in the first round last June with the eyes on the future. He’s an explosive athlete who doesn’t have a ton of moves but a nice touch around the rim. He was efficient, he played within himself. He has the potential to develop into a solid rotation big in the NBA.

But that future is on hold for a little bit.

The Clippers announced that Johnson has a herniated disc in his back and is now out “indefinitely.” He injured his back in the preseason game against the Raptors.

The goal is to rehab and avoid surgery. What that means is expect Johnson to be sidelined for an extended period of time, at least a month and likely more (ESPN reports 4-6 weeks, but backs are tricky things).

Johnson was not going to see a lot of court time this season — Blake Griffin, Brandon Bass, DeAndre Jordan, and Marreese Speights will soak up the majority of the minutes — but this is a setback on the team’s plans to develop his game.