World Peace jumped off the bench to enter Friday’s game with 2:12 left during a 127-100 victory over the Miami Heat.
Fans cheered his every move, which included three fouls, as though he had made a game-winning shot.
“It was great for Metta, honestly the fans love him and they should,” Walton said after the game. “He fouled too much when he was out there, but it was still nice.”
World Peace is on a nonguaranteed contract, but it will become guaranteed if he is still on the Lakers’ roster Saturday afternoon.
“I like him with us, but that’s a front-office decision,” Walton said. “My recommendation is to keep him.”
World Peace, 37, has played in 13 games and is averaging less than two points per game.
He won an NBA championship with the Lakers in 2010.
If the Lakers remove World Peace from the roster and the 16-year pro clears waivers, Walton said he would want World Peace to remain in the organization, perhaps in a coaching role.
“I want the guy around our players,” Walton said. “He’s professional, I think it’s more beneficial when he’s actually at practice and in the trenches with them, but he’s someone that helps the team just being around.”