NBA Draft Rumors: Metta World Peace Isn't Worth First Round Pick

Brian MaziqueCorrespondent IIIJune 27, 2012

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - MAY 21:  Metta World Peace #15 of the Los Angeles Lakers during Game Five of the Western Conference Semifinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs at Chesapeake Energy Arena on May 21, 2012 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

I've always liked Metta World Peace, even before he was who he is now—if that makes any sense. But he isn't worth a first-round pick, even if it's a late pick.

Sam Amico of Fox Sports is reporting:

The Lakers are exploring all kinds of potential deals, having floated every name on the roster this side of Kobe Bryant. They are said to be open to trading Metta World Peace for a late first-rounder, with their eyes on Baylor forward Quincy Miller and Kentucky point guard Marquis Teague.

He's 32 years old, mentally in a different place and he makes over $7 million per year.

I know he still has some game left, and that his contract only runs through the upcoming season. But he has a player-option for the 2013-2014 season, and if his play declines, as it has been over the past five seasons, he'd be wise to pick it up.

That could leave a team stuck with him at over $7 million per season for two years.

The chances that he's the final piece to a championship puzzle are simply not great enough to take on that responsibility. His scoring numbers have dipped for five consecutive seasons.

He's gone from averaging 20.5 points per game in 2007-2008, to averaging a career-low 7.7 points this past season. World Peace isn't even as good of a defender as he once was.

I think he still has some value, but it doesn't equate to the value of a first-round selection. That's especially the case when you look at the depth in this draft.

I would not take World Peace at this stage of his career, with his salary, over Draymond Green, Quincy Miller, Royce White, Festus Ezeli or Andrew Nicholson.

Essentially, that is what a team with a late first-round pick would be giving up to take on World Peace. The Lakers may be successful unloading his contract, but any team that parts with a first-round pick for him is nuts.


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