Matt Barnes is staying in Los Angeles, but it won’t be with the Lakers. He is crossing the hallway at Staples Center to play for the Clippers after agreeing to a one-year deal with the other team in the City of Angels.
Barnes, who is 32 years old, started his career with the Clippers. He played for the Clippers in 2003-04, averaging 4.5 points per game. The former UCLA standout has played for eight teams in nine seasons: the Clippers, Sacramento Kings, New York Knicks, Philadelphia 76ers, Golden State Warriors, Phoenix Suns, Orlando Magic and the Lakers for the last 2 seasons.
He has a reputation as a solid defender and decent scorer off the bench. He led the L.A. bench with 7.8 points per game and averaged 9.7 points over the final 10 games of the 2011-12 regular season.
But his play on the court has often been overshadowed by his reputation off the court. This summer, he was arrested in Manhattan Beach for a misdemeanor traffic ticket (driving with a suspended license) and threatening a police officer. He was arrested in 2010 on an alleged domestic violence incident, but was never prosecuted.
On the court, he has been called a dirty player for incidents ranging from throwing punches to slinging assistant coaches to the floor. But, apparently it didn’t detract the Clippers from signing him.
Darren Jacks is a contributor to OneManFastBreak.net. Send him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.