The Los Angeles Lakers have a plan for world peace. Or at least a preference for what they'll do if Metta World Peace doesn't make their final roster.
The front office has to trim the roster down from the 17 players currently on it to 15 by the start of the regular season, and as one of the three players on the team whose contract is not fully guaranteed, World Peace is one of the players on the chopping block. The 16-year veteran has played in just 11 minutes in two preseason appearances, and would seem to be a long shot to make the final roster.
However, the Lakers didn’t bring World Peace to camp for what he could contribute on the floor. The front office and coaching staff have spoken openly about valuing his role as a veteran mentor for the Lakers’ young roster, and it sounds like the team hopes they can find a way for that role to continue even if World Peace can’t beat out Thomas Robinson and Yi Jianlian for the final spot:
Story posting now with @ramonashelburne: Lakers have interest in making Metta World Peace an assistant coach if they run out of roster room.— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) October 21, 2016
It remains to be seen if World Peace will be just as amenable to joining the coaching staff if he doesn’t make the roster. He recently told Mark Medina of the Orange County Register that he hopes to play at least three more years before hanging it up for good.
If World Peace doesn’t make the roster and is amenable to coaching (which doesn’t pay nearly as much as the veteran’s minimum for a player with his experience), though, this could be a great way for his mentorship of Julius Randle and the rest of the young Lakers to continue this season.
All stats per NBA.com. You can follow this author on Twitter at @hmfaigen.