FRESNO -- It's an ongoing challenge separating fact from fiction when it comes to Metta World Peace.
The Lakers' eccentric forward has no filter and will even confirm false rumors that cast him in a bad light. Yet, World Peace always stays unpredictable. After all, hardly anyone seemed surprised when the former Ron Artest legally changed his name.
That's why it's a head scratcher assessing the validity of World Peace's plans after the Lakers' 110-83 exhibition loss Sunday to the Golden State Warriors in Fresno's Save Mart Center. With the Lakers having a day off Monday for the first time since training camp started last week, World Peace said he planned to drive to Las Vegas immediately afterward.
"Some buddies came. We'll hit the road," World Peace said. "Maybe we'll have a 'Hangover Part 3.' You never know."
Unless, of course, World Peace posts photos of his trip on Twitter. But his point is well taken. We never will know because, well, World Peace always leaves us guessing.
This time, Lakers fans shouldn't worry too much. His 10 points on three-of-six shooting, plus three assists and three steals were good signs. World Peace began training camp at 255 pounds, 17 pounds lighter than he was at last season's training camp. World Peace didn't force any shots in the team's exhibition opener. He also looked far more engaged and energetic.
Of course, anything involving World Peace's play, especially his shooting, is unpredictable. But his slimmed down and more mobile frame should allow him to keep up more with top scorers.
World Peace managed to keep this sharp physique even while partying extensively during July. A trip to Vegas shouldn't negate that progress.
"It's only the first game, but I'm definitely 17 pounds lighter," World Peace said. "At the same time, it's still just the beginning of camp. I'm going to improve, but I definitely feel much better.
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