Ron Artest On Proposed Name Change: “It’s Not Like I’m Trying To Be…Gandhi”
Ron Artest's desired name change (to "Metta World Peace") inspired plenty of snickering and good-natured "That's Ron for you"s, but Artest himself remained mum on the matter. That is, until yesterday, when he visited Pardon the Interruption to fill in some of the details as to exactly why he wants to do this, and how it came about.
We'll give Artest credit for honesty: he came right out and said marketing was a factor, but he also wanted to he "inspirational" and spread "positive energy" in making such a change. (And yes, Chad Ochocinco was Artest's original inspiration.) Originally, Artest wanted to call himself "One Love," but he got talked out of it. Smart move, we'd say: Metta World Peace os crazier, more interesting, and as Artest said, might even require a little research:
He also seemed to display a good amount of self-awareness as to just how drastic a change this would be. He doesn't care if people still call him "Ron" (good thing, since we imagine plenty of people won't be in a big hurry to refer to him as "World Peace" or "Metta"), and while he wants to spread a positive, message, he doesn't have any delusions about the potential impact: "It's not like I'm trying to be, like, Gandhi."
Artest/World Peace addressed a few other things: he's going to Finland for an event, not to play basketball there on a full-time basis, he was diplomatic on the subject of new Lakers head coach Mike Brown ("I think the Lakers made a good choice") in Mike Brown, and praised the Dallas Mavericks, whom Artest said "[brought] back team like Justin Timberlake [brought] back sexy." Just one more "Oh, Ron" moment of many, many more to come if the name change goes through.
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