Los Angeles Lakers: Metta World Peace Instrumental in Win over Miami Heat

All we are saying is give Peace a chance.

Metta World Peace played one of his best games of the season Sunday afternoon during the Los Angeles Lakers' victory over the Miami Heat.

He did a fabulous job guarding LeBron James throughout the game. While the King still flirted with a triple-double, he was a minus-13 on the floor. Metta also had four steals and was a menace on defense.

If the Lakers wanted to beat the Heat today, Metta had to be a factor. There's no stopping LeBron, but one can contain his effectiveness.

World Peace did that in key situations and his physicality gave the Lakers an edge. They looked like the team that wanted it more, and because of that, they were victorious.

World Peace's impact on the Lakers has not gone unnoticed by advanced metrics. With Matt Barnes in a unit with Derek Fisher, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum, the Lakers allowed 1.04 points per possession. This was the starting five before MWP took over. They were also minus-16.

With MWP in that same unit, which is the current starting lineup, the Lakers are plus-34 and allow 0.92 points per possession. This is a huge difference and it was exemplified today by the Lakers defense.

Finally, James has been the most effective player in terms of the "simple rating." He's No. 1 in the league with a rating of 19.3. The gap between No. 1 and No. 2 is not even close. James has done well against the Lakers in the past because of their deficiency at the small forward position, and he's been able to exploit it. 

Since 2005-06, the Lakers have had a net PER (Hollinger number) at the small forward percentage greater than 2.0 just once. Net PER by position is the comparison of a team's production to the opponent production. From this we can learn whether the team has been getting a net positive or negative overall contribution from that position.

This only shows that World P...

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