The Los Angeles Lakers have released forward Metta World Peace via the amnesty clause as of Thursday night.
"It's tough to say goodbye to a player such as Metta, who has been a significant part of our team the past four seasons. For anyone who's had the opportunity to get to know him, it's impossible not to love him," said general manager Mitch Kupchak in a release. "He has made many contributions to this organization, both in his community work as well as in our games; perhaps no more so than in his clutch play in Game 7 of the 2010 NBA Finals in helping to lead us over the Celtics in one of the greatest playoff wins in Lakers history. We thank Metta for all his contributions and wish him the best of luck in the future."
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With World Peace off the payroll the Lakers now will save approximately $14 million in savings. They'll still have to pay his $7.7 million salary for next season, but he is now on the market and now is up for bids for teams with cap room to claim him.
The 14-year veteran averaged 12.4 points (up from 7.7 in 2011-12) and 5.0 rebounds (up from 3.4) and improved his shooting percentages from the floor, the 3-point line and the foul line. World Peace has career averages of 14.1 points, 4.7 rebounds and 1.8 steals in his time with the Lakers, Houston Rockets, Sacramento Kings, Indiana Pacers and Chicago Bulls.
According to the New York Post, the New York Knicks are in search of a defensive small forward off the free-agent market and World Peace is intriguing to them. The Queensbridge product would seek the $1.4 million veteran's minimum, which is basically what the Knicks have to offer.