If it weren’t for bad press Matt Barnes would have none at all. Dude’s career almost parallels that of a villain in the WWE. About the only thing missing is his theme music.
The latest headline to feature Barnes revolves around a punch thrown during a summer league game in NorCal. This is nothing out of the ordinary as Barnes began his career as a Laker by slapping a coach in a summer league contest last year.
What makes this scenario different is that there are repercussions for Barnes’ actions.
Not one to stand back and watch as NBA players sully the reputation of his league, the director of the San Francisco Bay Area Pro-Am has taken action. Barnes was suspended for the first game of the league’s finals.
While I’m sure the suspension means little to Barnes – save for the change to get a little more rehab on his knee – it should matter.
Time is catching up with the career journeyman. Barnes is known as much for his high-energy style of play as he is for his hot temper. Even Ron Artest had the moment of clarity that put his career path in perspective. The difference is that Ron Ron had enough game to warrant a second, third and even fourth chance in the league.
Guys like Barnes who live out of a suitcase don’t have the same luxury.
Being that Barnes was largely ineffective after the first couple of months in L.A. combined with a knee injury and an expiring contract for good measure means his time is limited.
Time for Barnes to take the advice Jack Napier offered to Eckhardt and “think about the future”.