EL CAJON – Metta World Peace, a former NBA All-Star and Defensive Player of the Year who scored more than 13,000 points in his professional basketball career, joined the San Diego Kings for their highly-anticipated home game with the four-time defending ABA national champion Jacksonville Giants on Saturday night but the visitors still had too much for the hosts in a 138-124 win at El Cajon Valley High.
World Peace, who has competed previously against the Kings in ABA competition, signed a one-day contract to play for San Diego against the six-time champions of the league, which currently consists of over 100 teams throughout the country.
The man whose NBA career spanned 18 years arrived at the Braves’ gym with just over four minutes remaining in the first quarter. He quickly changed into a Kings’ jersey and took a seat on the bench before entering the game at the start of the second quarter.
The Kings, who qualified for the ABA’s Elite Eight championship tournament in Austin, Texas, last season as the league’s Far West champions, trailed just 30-28 after the first quarter, as San Diego hit four three-pointers during the opening period, including a pair of treys from Deonte Jones.
Jones’ first three in the opening quarter give the Kings a 15-13 lead a little under four minutes into the game. He second triple of the quarter was part of a 5-0 run to close out the quarter.
World Peace had an assist on his first touch of the game and later scored a basket in the period. He also scored five points in the third quarter, including a three, to finish with seven points in the contest.
Former NBA Defensive Player of the Year Metta World Peace shoots over a Jacksonville player on Saturday at El Cajon Valley High.
However, the entry of World Peace, known most of his NBA career by his given name of Ron Artest, seemed to fire up the Giants more than the hosts.
San Diego’s Manny Perez scored six of his 19 points in the second quarter, but the Giants extended their lead to 64-46 by halftime behind Dylon Cormier’s 13 points in the period.
However, the Giants eventually built a 30-plus point lead in the third, despite Marcus Bell’s eight points in the period. Bell finished with 17 points.
Jacksonville’s Bernard Nugent scored 11 of his 23 points in the third quarter. Cormier finished with 24 points.
The Kings’ Deion Davis scored 24 points in the fourth quarter, while teammate James Hancock added 10 points in the fourth. The duo hadn’t registered a point between them for the first three periods.
The Giants followed up their win over the Kings on Saturday with a 115-103 win over the San Diego Guardians on Sunday night at San Diego High, giving Jacksonville a two-game sweep of its trip to San Diego.
By East County Sports