Monday, October 21, 2013
Woody on MWP: Impressed with everything
By Ian Begley
Someone asked Metta World Peace on Sunday if he was "doing more" to try and prove himself to his new teammates and coaches.
"You really can’t be more than what you are, and you really can’t be less than what you are," World Peace, the philosopher, said. "Just be you."
So far, World Peace being World Peace has worked out well, according to Mike Woodson.
"I'm impressed with everything he's done," the coach said. "He's a guy that we had to make take a day off and [make him sit out] a game. Because he's here early and he's 'go go go.' I like that in him.
"There's nothing [World Peace] can't do on the basketball floor," says Mike Woodson.
"He's a tough kid and there's nothing he can't do on the basketball floor," Woodson added. "All of those things are great when you're talking about trying to win at a high level."
But can World Peace play at a high level this season?
The 33-year-old had surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee in late March and returned to the court just 12 days later.
He says his knee is fine. But the Knicks plan to limit his minutes and usage this season, which seems wise.
When he's on the court, World Peace will be counted on to defend the opponent's best wing or power forward, depending on the lineup. The Knicks also need World Peace to rebound. His defensive rebounding rate -- a percentage of the available defensive rebounds a player grabs while on the floor -- was up last season, as was his total rebounding rate. But World Peace was below the league average in both statistics.
Still, Woodson is encouraged by what he's seen from the Queensbridge native in the preseason. In two games, World Peace has averaged 13 points and five rebounds in 25 minutes.
But his greatest impact has been made on the practice floor. In practice, World Peace has pushed Carmelo Anthony more than any other teammate has in the past seven years, according to J.R. Smith, Anthony's long-time teammate.
"He does all the little things to help you win," Woodson said. "I just can't wait to really get started when it counts and him being a big part of what we do."