The Los Angeles Lakers’ Metta World Peace goes from Cookie Monster pajamas and funny interviews to elbows to the head without so much as a warning.
On Monday, when the Lakers played the Denver Nuggets, World Peace elbowed Kenneth Faried in the face. Surprisingly, even with World Peace’s history of elbowing people in the face, the officials didn’t call a flagrant foul.
According to the Los Angeles Times, upon reviewing the tape, the NBA revised the decision and has retroactively given World Peace a flagrant foul.
World Peace now leads the league in flagrant foul points with five. His teammate Dwight Howard also has five flagrant fouls. If either player gets another flagrant 1 or 2, they’re suspended.
The difference between Howard and World Peace is that Howard isn’t elbowing people in the head. His flagrant don’t have the same intent or malice behind them.
In order for disciplinary action to be taken, World Peace has to commit another offence. Since a number of World Peace’s flagrant fouls come from elbows to the head, there is a chance someone could get seriously hurt before anything is done.
Earlier this month, Brandon Knight told Yahoo! Sports that he believes that World Peace tried to hit him with the James Harden elbow:
“The play needs to be reviewed because he definitely threw a punch,” Knight told reporters after the game. “It felt like he threw a punch. That’s why I reacted the way I did.
“The play was over and he grabbed me around the neck. If someone grabs you around the neck, you’re not just going to let that happen. You do what you need to get that person off you.”
World Peace received a one game suspension for the punch to Knight. Last season, it was several for elbowing Harden.
In November, Jeremy Lin received an unnecessary knock to the head. At this point, it’s probably not a coincidence that World Peace’s elbow has connected with so many heads.
Even if World Peace’s flagrants fouls are unintentional, both the Lakers and the NBA need to make sure he stops before someone gets seriously injured.