My Dualshock 3 didn't have the three armed plastic piece on the D-pad. Mine's a red one, relatively recent. My controller also had the problem where it would randomly send button press events when using the L-stick. I traced the problem to the ribbon connector between the board and the contacts, which was very dirty. I cleaned the contacts and put the controller back together with an additional rubber shim between the back cover and the battery, which got rid of the creakiness of the somewhat loose-fitting case. Works great now.