Metta World Peace: Bizarre Run-in with Police Keeps Us Interested in Fading Star

Mike Hoag@MikeHoagJrCorrespondent IIFebruary 22, 2013

Apr. 7, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward Metta World Peace reacts with a smile during the game against the Phoenix Suns at the US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Lakers 125-105.  Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Metta World Peace, the basketball player formerly known as Ron Artest, has done a lot over the years to stand out from the crowd during his 15-year NBA career.

His latest foray into the public sphere, a run-in with police at his condo complex, is nothing short of bizarre. World Peace took to Twitter quickly to dispel any concerns:

Police reportedly responded in force to a call from his condominium’s valet, who reported gunplay at the Los Angeles Lakers forward’s home, according to Melissa Rohlin of the Los Angeles Times.

World Peace said he had no idea what was happening:

At first when I seen the police, I was like, 'What the hell is going on? I just got finished watching 'Zero Dark Thirty' or whatever that movie is. I'm like, 'I'm dreaming, I'm dreaming. Is there a terrorist in the building? Do y'all need my help?’

What has happening, though, was an independent film shoot that simply went wrong.

Three members of World Peace’s Artest Media Group, including Isaiah Artest, his younger brother, were filming a scene with a prop shot-gun and two prop handguns for their to-be-named indie flick.

While strange, World Peace didn’t have anything to do with his latest media explosion. But, there has been no shortage of events that he has perpetrated throughout his career in the public eye.

Tallying up all of his suspensions by the NBA would make you wonder whether or not he is able to play without causing controversy. In 15 seasons in the league he has been sidelined on 14 different occasions.

As sure as the sun sets in the West each day, Metta World Peace nearly gets suspended at least once each NBA season. Nearly all of his suspensions have come as a result of violence on the court, not off of it.

His latest suspension, of the one-game variety, came after he hit Detroit Pistons guard Brandon Knight in the jaw.

That’s a far cry from a November 2004 incident that made him infamous. The then-named Ron Artest exchanged punches with fans in Detroit resulting in a 73-game suspension (plus 13 playoff games). That is the longest non-drug related suspension in league history.

Suspensions aren’t the end of it, though. World Peace has a funny, yet sometimes misunderstood personality and demeanor, too.

Changing his name to Metta World Peace probably hasn’t helped shed any of the wanted or unwanted spotlight he continues to receiver, either.

Whether it’s fighting, saying outlandish things or finding crazy ways to capture our attention—World Peace simply won’t let go of the spotlight, even as his game continues to fade more and more on the court.

We’ll all keep tuning in, though, because it is simply too entertaining at this point.