“AP News Alert: Lakers’ Metta World Peace (former Pacer Ron Artest) is suspended 7 games for elbowing Thunder guard James Harden.”
That’s the headline floating around my twitter feed, and if that is the punishment, I have to say it sounds about right. I was guessing on the side of last two games and the first round of the playoffs, so this is just under that. Maybe the NBA thinks the Lakers will only last five games.
I’ve watched the video of Artest, hate calling him MWP, so I stick with Artest, and maybe I’m just naive in thinking he wasn’t doing this with much intention. He was around celebrating, and Harden was there. Do you think the punishment goes up if he knocks out Lebron James or Kevin Durant? I’m inclined to say yes because those are guys very important to their team, and the NBA would hate to lose those guys for any length.
Now this isn’t to downgrade James Harden because he’s an important member of the bench for Oklahoma City, but everyone knows how the NBA works. You protect the superstars. You give the calls to the elite players. You let those big guys do what they need to do.
I’m just surprised with all of Artest’s baggage, especially coming off last year’s clothesline of JJ Barea in the series with the Mavericks, and he’s only missing 7 games. But at the same time, maybe it shouldn’t be surprising. The only thing I do realize is that this guy will might not get it, and it’s going to take something drastic for him to get it. If that even happens.