January 11, 2000: Metta World Peace (f/k/a Ron Artest) returns to MSG as a rookie
In the 1999 NBA Draft, Ed Tapscott inexplicably drafted Frederic Weis over St. John’s own Metta World Peace. 99% of Knicks fans and media, alike, panned the selection. Even MWP himself was baffled the Knicks didn’t select the Queens native. The Chicago Bulls selected him right after the Knicks picked Weis.
July 16th 2013: The New York Knicks sign Metta World Peace
The player formerly known as Ron Artest returned home to New York on a 2 year minimum contract deal. Metta spent the previous 4 seasons with the Lakers and won a ring in 2010. The Lakers amnestied him shortly after the beginning of the 2013 Free Agency.
Most of the hype surrounding Metta was around the idea of returning home. At the outset, his quirky personality resonated amongst Knicks fans, beginning with an impromptu interview on MSG shortly after his signing in the Vegas Summer League.
His idiosyncrasies carried into training camp and the regular season with his funny interviews and media sessions. Unfortunately, Metta never got a fair shot with the Knicks. A combination of injuries and a downward spiraling record led to reduced minutes and frustration. In addition, Metta somewhat exposed the influence CAA had within the Knicks organization. As a result, the Knicks bought him out shortly after the trade deadline.