A mere fourteen years later than it probably should have happened, the man formerly known as Ron Artest is a New York Knick. Artest/Metta World Peace just signed a two-year deal with his hometown team (if we operate under the assumption that the Nets are only the hometown team if you’re from Jersey).
Metta World Peace has reached an agreement in principle on a two-year deal with the New York Knicks, league source tells Y! Sports.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 15, 2013
There are too many angles to cover here. Let’s try to enumerate a few, Daily News headline style:
1. I’M COMIN’ HOME: Metta World Peace, born Ron Artest, grew up in Queens, NY. By signing with the Knicks, he’ll be playing for the team he grew up idolizing.
2. A LONG TIME COMIN’: This should have happened over a decade ago. Back in 1999, the Knicks had a chance to draft Artest, a St. John’s product known for tenacious defense. They opted for Frederic Weis, who never played a minute in the NBA and went on to become the victim of “le dunk de la mort” — the dunk of death.
3. CHINA? MORE LIKE, BYE, NAH!: A few days ago, word was that MWP was done with the NBA and would look to play in China instead. Oh well.
4. RIVALRY-TASTIC: MWP may be old(er) and slow(er), but he’s still a perimeter defender — something the Knicks desperately needed to contend with, just for example, their crosstown rivals, the Brooklyn Nets. MWP’s fierceness and, it should be said, short fuse will no doubt lead to some amazing showdowns with Kevin Garnett and/or Paul Pierce.
5. WORLD CLASS S&!T-TALKER: Mere moments after the signing:
Where Brooklyn at?
— Metta World Peace (@MettaWorldPeace) July 15, 2013
6. N.Y. STATE OF MIND: It seems MWP had visions of orange and blue before today:
I am loving my baseball game. I got one hit pic.twitter.com/lUJW4kAUy6
— Metta World Peace (@MettaWorldPeace) July 14, 2013
We could go on.
In the words of another great sports instigator: Get your popcorn ready.