Metta World Peace has no interest in making a bury-the-hatchet peace action with Oklahoma City’s James Harden at the onset of the LA Lakers’ Western Conference semifinals series against the Thunder. Baseball betting lines
“I don’t shake substitutes’ hands,” World Peace asserted after contributing fifteen points, 5 rebounds and 4 takes in the Lakers’ 96-87 Game Seven victory over the Denver Nuggets in his 1st appearance since serving a 7-game suspension for his elbow to Harden’s head last month.
Harden isn’t just any substitute naturally; he’s the 6th Man of the Year who suffered a concussion in the 2nd quarter of the Lakers’ 114-106 double-overtime win over the Thunder on April 22 after World Peace’s elbow following a dunk dropped him to the floor.
World Peace issued a declaration of apology following the situation and told reporters in his 1st public declarations about the suspension almost 2 weeks back that he reached out to check on Harden’s health thru a 3rd person.
But World Peace has still to speak to Harden directly and related that he hasn’t any plans to even acknowledge the Thunder’s flexible wing player on the court before Game 1.
“My issue is executing the coaches’ game program and that’s what my concern is,” World Peace expounded when asked if he had any thoughts about facing Harden for the 1st time since the suspension.
The changeable Lakers forward went on to say that the whole Thunder team has a bit of a habit of ignoring the common NBA ritual of showing mutual respect before tipoff with a handshake or fist pound.
“I shake everyone’s hand before the game, but Oklahoma City, they don’t shake hands,” World Peace recounted. “Only some of them, but I don’t believe they actually shake hands before the game. Kendrick Perkins and now (Russell) Westbrook don’t shake hands either. (Russell) used to shake hands, but now he doesn’t shake hands anymore.”
World Peace said that his failed hand shake attempts with Perkins date back to the 2010 Finals when Perkins was a member of the Boston Celtics.
“I used to go and shake hands,” World Peace declared. “I’ve been playing in opposition to Kendrick forever. Kendrick, he’ll never shake your hand so I’d have to go and find Kendrick and shake his hand. In Boston, each game I’d have to go to him and say, ‘Hey, ‘ and then tap him on the butt. He does not touch my hand. However I’m becoming bored with making that walk.”
World Peace also tweaked Harden after the Lakers’ shootaround when asked a not related question about what response he’s received from admirers thru social media during his suspension.
“I don’t want support for what I did,” World Peace expounded. “I still love my fans, but I don’t want to be supported for (that). Even though he came and ran up behind me and he’s done that before to Tyson Chandler and other players and he flopped even in the series (against Dallas) in the 1st round, but I don’t need assistance for that.”
Harden averaged 18.3 points, 5.5 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game on 50.0 % shooting from the field and 46.2 % shooting from 3-point range in the Thunder’s sweep of the Mavericks in the 1st round, including 29 points in the close-out Game Four.