Shippensburg did not wait long to fill its high school basketball coach openings.

After all, there was quite a bit of familiarity with the top candidates.

At Monday's school board meeting, Ray Staver was approved as the boys head coach and Amy Lyman was named the girls head coach.

If those names sound like you've heard them before, you'd be correct.

Staver has already put in 20 years in two different stretches as the Greyhounds' boys coach, compiling a total record of 286-218. Lyman was previously the Lady Hounds' head girls volleyball coach, serving for four years with a record of 46-34.

"I'm really grateful to the administration and the board for the opportunity," Staver said. "I'm really excited about it."

After his last season, in 2007-08, Staver took a year of sabbatical, then decided not to coach when he came back. Darren Shaffer manned the post in the three years since.

This past winter, Staver was Shippensburg's eighth-grade basketball coach, and the team was 13-4. He also got to coach his son Keagan.

"That position had opened up the year before and I didn't want to do it," Staver said. "But last year it opened again and my son said, 'Dad, I just want to play at least one year with you as coach.' That kind of decided it for me."

And Staver found that, "I still had a passion for it. I started as a seventh-grade coach, then JV and varsity, and now eighth grade. It gives you a different perspective on the game.


It was more relaxing and we could focus more on the fundamentals."

Staver said that all three Hound junior high teams had good records last year, so there is some talent in the system. The Ship varsity was No," said Kobe Bryant, his teammate and tireless defender. "Everybody, all you guys, know what a sweet guy he is."

While the NBA's top brass watched video of the elbow and debated the length of a suspension Monday, sports fans debated whether to give Peace another chance. Some saw his actions as an ill-timed celebration that accidentally hurt a player standing too close, while others thought the Lakers forward should be suspended indefinitely, perhaps even banned from the NBA for a dangerous lack of impulse control.

"During that play, I just dunked on (Kevin) Durant and (Serge) Ibaka, and I got really emotional and excited," World Peace said in a 30-second statement afterward, refusing to take questions in the Lakers' locker room. "The Thunder, they're playing for a championship this year, so I hope that he's OK, and I apologize to the Thunder and to James Harden. You know, it was such a great game, and it was unfortunate so much emotion was going on at that time."

The prolific tweeter gave a bit more insight about the elbow later that night.

"I just watched the replay again," World Peace tweeted. "Oooo.. My celebration of the dunk really was too much... Didn't even see James ..... Omg... Looks bad."

No matter what the NBA does to World Peace, his rebuilt image has taken another big blow. His actions also added a layer of irony to his decision last September to change his name, including a first name he claims is a traditional Buddhist term denoting kindness and friendliness.

Until World Peace leveled Harden with what appeared to be a precise elbow to the head in a key game for both teams' playoff plans, some fans might have nearly forgotten the image of Artest throwing punches at a fan in the Detroit suburbs 7 1/2 years ago, mistakenly thinking that fan had thrown a drink at him while he played for the Indiana Pacers.

While Harden rolled in agony on the floor, his teammates confronted World Peace, who appeared ready to fight Ibaka. World Peace then spoke with the officials, appearing to mime an argument that he had simply been celebrating with a chest-pound that missed its target, before they ejected him for a flagrant foul.

"Him getting ejected could have really hurt us," Bryant said after the Lakers rallied from an 18-point deficit for a double-overtime victory over the Thunder. "In that sense, he's really going to have to control himself and pay attention in those moments where he doesn't erupt too much."

Even opponents are divided in their opinions on the NBA veteran. Oklahoma City big man Kendrick Perkins spoke in defense of World Peace, saying he would never intentionally harm another player, while superstar Kevin Durant was more cautious.

"I couldn't really get a good look at it," Durant said. "I'm just happy my teammate is all right. It was a bad play. Hopefully, Ron didn't do it intentionally or have any malicious intentions on that."

World Peace's two sides are difficult to reconcile, even for the player himself. He grew up around violence and gang activity in Queensbridge projects of Queens, New York, but excelled in college before becoming an NBA All-Star and the league's top defensive player in 2004. He has acknowledged drinking during games early in his career, and he rewarded the Pacers for their patience with his 2004-05 suspension by demanding a trade shortly after he returned.

Yet World Peace appears to have his life on track in Los Angeles, where he signed as a free agent in 2009. Six months after he famously thanked his psychiatrist when he scored 20 points in the Lakers' victory over Boston in Game 7 of the 2010 NBA finals, Artest even raffled off his championship ring, raising $65,000 for mental health causes.

"There's been ups and downs, a real roller-coaster ride, but this is one of the times you look back and say it was all worth it," Artest said last year after winning the Kennedy award as the NBA's best citizen. "Everything I've been through has made me who I am today."

An extended suspension for World Peace would harm the Lakers, likely headed to the postseason as the No. 3 seed in search of the franchise's 17th NBA title. World Peace usually defends their opponents' top swingman while providing intermittent offense, including 12 points before he was ejected. Any lengthy absence for Harden could be an even bigger problem for Oklahoma City, which will be seeded ahead of Los Angeles and could meet the Lakers in the second round. The Thunder have designs on a championship run, and the heavily bearded Harden is their most important reserve.

"It was a bad play, there is no way around it," said Oklahoma City coach Scott Brooks, who coached Artest as an assistant during the 2006-07 season in Sacramento. "It was a dangerous play. It's not a play that should be involved in basketball. I know Ron. Unfortunately, it did happen, but you can't do that. It's unacceptable."

Familiar faces

The Shippensburg School Board had proven records to go on when it approved the hiring of coaches Monday night for the high school's basketball programs - Ray Staver (boys) and Amy Lyman (girls).

- Ray Staver - in 2 stints as the Greyhounds coach (1985-86 to 94-94, and 97-98 to 2007-08) that totaled 20 years, he had a record of 286-218 (.564). The Hounds reached the District 3 playoffs 14 times and reached the final in 86-87. Ship also made 2 PIAA tournament appreances.

- Amy Lyman - she coached the Lady Hounds' volleyball team for 4 years (2002-05) and compiled a record of 46-34 (.575). Ship qualified for the District 3 playoffs in 3 of her 4 seasons.