This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.
This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.
The Ballad of Ron-Ron and Hennessey
Things have been very quiet on the Ron Artest front so far. A strange appearance on the Jimmy Kimmel Show, his sister getting caught up allegedly committing welfare fraud and unique tweets aside, the shitstorm that was supposed to be Artest really hasn’t manifested itself.
Until now that is.
In a seemingly Oprah-esque interview he gave to The Sporting News, he admits to drinking Hennessey during halftime while with the Chicago Bulls from 1999-2002, wanting to go after Ben Wallace and calling Trevor Ariza all hype.
“I used to drink Hennessey … at halftime,” Artest said. “I (kept it) in my locker. I’d just walk to the liquor store (near the stadium) and get it.”
Among other things he confessed:
- His profuse use of alcohol and pot while at St. John’s.
- He was a head case and a bad teammate while with the Bull and Indiana Pacers which led to his departure in both instances.
- He doesn’t understand why people compare him and Ariza. He believes his body of work surpasses the hype behind Ariza’s championship ring.
- He’s always in the mood to fight Piston’s center Ben Wallace. If he’s not careful, he would fight him right on the court. But he added that he wouldn’t go into the stands.
- He admits that he is now part of the supporting cast offensively with the Lakers. But he adds that he now has a supporting cast on defense.
- He wants to become a boxer.
What is confusing me is why Artest would want to do a soul-purging interview now. This seems the sort of thing one would want to do after one’s career is over. But in the middle of a career, nothing good can come out of it.
While I could use all the rational arguments against Artest doing this, all of it is forgetting one crucial piece of information: This is Ron Artest.
He’s a nut job through and through. While he seems to have mellowed out and, dare I say, matured over the last several years, he still needs to have his crazy outlet. And I guess right now this interview is that outlet.
I’m sure Bulls fans will be upset at his revelation of sneaking in some Hennessey, but Lakers fans should care less. Right now Artest is behaving himself and playing all out on the defensive end of the floor giving the Lakers victory after victory. And right now that’s all that matters.
But that is some funny shit, ain’t it?