Nowadays, Metta World Peace loves coach Mike Brown, but that wasn't always the case. Back in 2003, Brown was working as an assistant for the Indiana Pacers when head coach Rick Carlisle told him to lead the practice scrimmages between the starters and bench players. The order was met with hostility by World Peace. “He said, ‘No, no, Coach, we can’t have these teams. We’re gonna kill the second unit,'” Brown told the San Jose Mercury News. Brown's response? “Go ahead and kill them. Let’s see what happens.”
The second unit ended up winning, and Brown told the starters to run. That's when an angry World Peace responded by kicking a basketball into the rafters, and Brown confronted him.
Per Anthony Slater of the San Jose Mercury News:
“I yelled, ‘Ron, don’t kick that ball!’”
“I’ll do what the (bleep) I want,” Artest yelled back.
“Don’t you kick that ball again,” Brown demanded.
Artest didn’t. He instead charged toward Brown.
“I’m thinking, ‘Oh my god, I’m gonna have to fight him,’” Brown said. “Please somebody help me. Michael Smith—Michael ‘The Animal’ Smith—stepped in and stopped the thing.”
Even though Brown was hoping and praying, at the time, that someone would prevent World Peace from getting his hands on him, the man formerly known as Ron Artest says he respects Brown for never being "afraid to confront" him. “One thing I love about Mike, he was never afraid to confront me,” World Peace said. “Although I wouldn’t listen at times—I was very, very controversial, in my own world—but Mike always confronted me. I loved it. Because he never let me do wrong. He never, ever let me do wrong.”
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