I think we all saw that Metta arrived in camp in really good shape this year. I think we've also noticed that he comes to play every night. He may not always make the right play, and sometimes it may be hard to understand the choices he makes on the floor, but he's our steadiest contributor at both ends of the floor, and maybe just as important he's been healthy all year.
What's most surprising to me is that despite the run-and-gun games we've had, and the propensity Metta has for jacking up shots, he's actually shooting .356 from the three-point line this season. Which clearly suggests that he should keep hoisting those shots even when it makes us all wince or go daffy. (He's shooting 5.6 threes a game, which seems crazy -- but if he can hit better than 33.3% there's literally no reason for him to stop.)
When he's not shooting threes Metta is scoring at a .492 FG% [fixed], which might seem pretty bad until you look at his numbers and realize that's his best FG% in the last five years. (After a truly precipitous fall-off last year his three-point FG% has actually bounced back above his career average.)
His rebounds are up as high as they've been in five years, and so is his FT%. In short, the guy has come back in a big way and is taking up a lot of slack on a team that has really been struggling. If we didn't have him we would probably already have gone over the cliff we're teetering on the edge of.
With all the completely absurd and insane stuff that's happening on the team this year, from injuries to new players to personality issues, I think it's been easy to overlook the fact that the guy has become incredibly reliable and one of our least-distracting players. If he can hook up with D12 and Clark I honestly think they can make life hell on other teams -- particularly if they're willing to dish out some hard old-school fouls that make cutters and slashers think twice about driving the lane.
In any case, I think he deserves a round of applause for not giving in to the drama, and not causing any himself. He's been a model citizen and a helluva team player so far.
All stats: http://www.basketball-reference.com/...artesro01.html