As he walked into the Lakers’ practice facility Friday, Metta World Peace believed he couldn’t play any longer.
The pain persisted in his surgically repaired left leg anytime he shot the ball or chased down a defender. But with the Lakers backcourt thinning because of injuries to Kobe Bryant (torn left Achilles tendon), Steve Nash (sore right hamstring), Steve Blake (strained right hamstring) and Jodie Meeks (sprained left ankle), World Peace changed his sentiments.
Instead, World Peace had 20 cc of liquid drained from a cyst in his left knee in hopes it would jumpstart his play for when the Lakers played Game 3 Friday against the San Antonio Spurs at Staples Center.
“A couple of times I went to the hole and thought I can’t move and I can’t be aggressive,” World Peace said. “Once the adrenaline gets flowing, I’m sure the pain will go away.”
World Peace walked in the locker room with a limp. His movement looked just as awkward after returning a mere 12 days after having a surgery to treat a lateral meniscus tear in his left knee. Was that injury related to the cyst in his knee?
“It wasn’t,” World Peace said. “But the meniscus directed more fluid there.”
World Peace averaged 7.57 points on 33.9 percent shooting since then, a severe dropoff from his season average of 12.4 points on a 40.3 percent clip.
“I knew coming back I wouldn’t be 100 percent,” said World Peace, who initially was expected to miss at least six weeks. “It’s impossible after having knee surgery.”
Yet, his quick recovery prompted World Peace to publicly suggest Oklahoma City guard Russell Westbrook should consult him for advice after suffering a lateral meniscus tear in his right knee, an injury that will sideline him indefinitely.
“If he wants to come back this year, call Metta World,” he said. “I have the remedies.”
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