Metta World Peace may have just been slapped with a retroactive flagrant-2 foul for a hard hit he gave to the face of Kenneth Faried of the Denver Nuggets, but the Lakers forward insists he isn’t a dirty player.
That’s not the way Nuggets’ coach George Karl saw it. Karl said the play by World Peace, formerly known as Ron Artest, went beyond the boundaries of normal play.
“George Karl knows, come on,” World Peace said, via ESPN. “He’s been in this NBA longer than me. Come on, he knows the era of basketball.”
Metta World Peace was referring to the physical style of the 1990s, when the Detroit Pistons embraced the moniker of “Bad Boys.”
World Peace added:
“It’s not like I brought this aggression to the league. I didn’t invent this. This is what we watched, this is what we saw. The Bill Laimbeers and the (Dennis) Rodmans, they play hard and they wasn’t trying to hurt anybody. They played hard. They played with passion. We grew up wanting to play with passion. So, when the guys say we’re dirty, we’re just playing hard.”
No foul was actually called on World Peace originally after making contact with Faried, the Los Angeles Times noted.
The reputation that he is a dirty player would have some backing. Aside from Metta World Peace‘s history, which has included multiple suspensions and fines including a one-year ban for sparking a brawl in Detroit in 2004, there is also his record of fouls this year.
Metta World Peace is tied with teammate Dwight Howard with five flagrant fouls, most in the NBA. One more for either player and they will receive an automatic suspension.