Thursday, September 19, 2013

Metta World Peace: 'The Lakers are going to the NBA Finals'

If you believe Metta World Peace he hasn't been paying too much attention to the war of words between the Knicks and Nets this offseason and it sounds like the former Lakers player harbors no ill feelings towards his old team either.

World Peace signed with the Knicks after he was waived by the Lakers via the amnesty clause. He won a championship with the Lakers in 2010, and surprisingly believes his former team is poised to make another title run.

"I think Kobe [Bryant] is going to be healthy, they're going to have Pau [Gasol], the Lakers are going to make a big trade like they always do . . . and they're going to go to the Finals," World Peace said at a signing for his children's book, "Metta's Bedtime Stories," in TriBeCa.

As for the Knicks' competition in the Eastern Conference, World Peace was underwhelmed. But conceded that the two-time defending champion Heat is "pretty good."

"I think all those teams are good, but I think the Knicks are going to be great," World Peace said.

Regarding all of the summer yammering between the two New York teams, the Queens native sounded hungry for more than just coffee talk.

"I don't have no energy to go back and forth with words because there's just too many great things happening in New York City," said World Peace, who signed a two-year deal with the Knicks in July. "I just want apple pie. I don't feel like talking. I want to go to Whole Foods and enjoy my Whole Foods."

The Nets' acquisition of Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Jason Terry in a blockbuster trade with the Celtics shook up the basketball world. But World Peace claims he has barely paid attention.

"Honestly, I don't even know who's on their team," World Peace said. "I'm not going to lie. I'm just happy to be a Knick."

World Peace could start at small forward alongside Carmelo Anthony or come off the bench. He noted that every time in his career he was assigned a reserve role, he eventually was moved to the starting lineup.

"I don't have an issue with coming off the bench. I've been starting for 15 years, so it should be somebody else's chance to start," World Peace said. "I could have gone to any other team I wanted to and started. I got calls from Oklahoma and the Clippers and all these teams. But I came here and it wasn't to start, it was to win a ring."

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