Janis Carr of the Orange County Register reports:

Ron Artest messed with Kobe Bryant during a game and a year later he found himself playing alongside the Lakers star.

Now, Matt Barnes, the Orlando guard who tried to intimidate Bryant by shoving a ball in his face and generally got under his skin during a loss to Orlando last season, has joined the Lakers. What’s up with that?

In both cases, the players came at Kobe’s urging, because he wanted them on his side.

“He said, ‘Anyone crazy enough to mess with me is crazy enough to play with me,’ ” Barnes said with a laugh Tuesday.