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Report: Metta World Peace working with Julius Randle, moving closer to signing with Lakers

Los Angeles Lakers v San Antonio Spurs - Game One

Los Angeles Lakers v San Antonio Spurs - Game One

NBAE/Getty Images

The Lakers are reportedly considering signing Metta World Peace.

He denied knowing about talks, but they’re apparently progressing.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports:

Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders:

Not that World Peace would necessarily be a bad mentor, but is he the best mentor available? At this point, that’s probably all the 35-year-old World Peace can provide. It’s hard to see him contributing much, if anything, on the court at his age. Why World Peace rather than Elton Brand or Emeka Okafor or…?

But that discussion ignores a fundamental question: Is a leader on a team that already has veterans Kobe Bryant, Brandon Bass, Roy Hibbert and Lou Williams the best use of that roster spot?

Depending on Marcelo Huertas’ guarantee, the Lakers will have just two or three roster spots for Jabari Brown, Tarik Black, Michael Frazier and Jonathan Holmes. If World Peace makes the team, that leaves room for just one or two of those youngsters.

The Lakers might be better off hiring World Peace as an assistant coach. Teammates can obviously reach young players in a way coaches can’t, but coaches can also connect in ways teammates can’t. Even if you accept World Peace would better mentor Randle as a teammate than a coach – no given – that would mean losing a young player. Would World Peace mentor Randle that much better as a teammate to justify dropping one more of Brown, Black, Frazier and Holmes?

The Lakers should be seriously contemplating these difficult questions, not just falling for the comfort of a familiar face.