Thursday, November 11, 2004


                         Ron Artest
                             {DISCUSS THE INDIANA PACERS HERE }

You can’t make this stuff up at times. 

Ron Artest, who has been mysteriously benched this week, has come clean on why. Artest said Wednesday that he asked Pacers’ coach Rick Carlisle for time off since he had a busy schedule that included……..promoting his rap album. Yep, that’s right. And not just a few games…but ONE MONTH. He needed a month off to “heal his aching body and recover from a particularly busy schedule.”

Carlisle said that the situation compromised the integrity of the team….and sat him for a few games with pay. That, is funny to me…since that is like suspending a high schooler for skipping school. In fact, Artest, thinking he really didn’t ask anything too outlandish, doesn’t mind the punishment….since he gets the rest he wanted in the first place.


Artest, who is just 24, is supposed to drop his rap album on November 23….and has been making a lot of promo appearances. “After the album comes out, I’m going to make sure all of my time is focused on winning a championship.”

Not bad….since games played now, like that 34-point home loss to the Clippers, count as well. I mean, what if the Pacers end the season a game or two behind the Pistons for the Central division title?? Well, all that would mean is the Pacers would be a 4th seed in the East….and would play the best team in the East in the second round, if they advance.

This is a very interesting and quite frankly a controversial move by everyone involved. Artest has had a history of attitude problems and team-related issues. Not to mention, for a guy that was Defensive Player of the Year last season….and an All-Star….he was still rumored to be “available” in trade talks. Also, this puts out the question “where’s Ron’s head at?” Is this new music career more important than his hoops career??? Now, I’m not downing this sort of thing…..but it isn’t good to have your extra-curricular activities infringing on your multi-million dollar job. Just like if Rick Fox left the Laker game in the 3rd quarter so he could be on the set of OZ. Or like Tracy McGrady wanting time off from posing for pictures and doing “promos” for his shoe. Heck, Kobe Bryant showed up for court hearings and still got back to the game and played.

And this comes at the same time Paul Pierce gets elbowed in the face....loses three of his chiclets.....goes thru SEVEN HOURS of dental surgery....and still played against the Blazers tonight. 

This also will go into Carlisle’s file. The Pacers have had injury problems kill the beginning to their season. The decision to bench Artest could thin the team out too much and hurt in the long run [it forced Jermaine O‘Neal into action while injured]. This also could bring some division on the team….something that Carlisle was trying to avoid by handling this situation. I mean, most of us could see Carlisle just saying, “Ron, are you crazy??? No. Now get your gear on and get out to shoot-a-rounds”.


And all of this lends another question….why is Artest releasing a rap album?? I mean, Allen Iverson’s rap career lasted a week after pulling his “40 Bars” song from the shelves. Kobe Bryant’s rap album is in the $1 bin. Shaq’s catalogue of music is quite comical! This joins with NBAers like Ced Ceballos, Chris Webber, Walter McCarty and Walt Williams who really think they can spit on the mike. Maybe Artest can get on Rasheed Wallace’s radio show? What about Deion Sanders’ “Must Be The Money”?? Peter Jacobson Mark Lye and the late Payne Stewart had a band called “Jake And The Flounders”. NFL players merged with rap artist for an NFL RAPS CD and with country artists for an NFL COUNTRY CD. And you can forget the Chicago Bears’ “Super Bowl Shuffle”… least the proceeds from that went to charity.

There are exceptions. Wayman Tisdale is a very, very successful jazz musician. Oscar de la Hoya was up for a Grammy. Bernie Williams has a nice sound. Jack McDowell has made quite a career in music. But, those guys did their thing on the side….or gave up their sporting job altogether.


So, do one of the other, Ron. Or you can hang out with Eddie Murphy and “Party All The Time”…..ya heard??


monponsett said...

Brett Favre is taking off 2 weeks in November to promote his bluegrass CD.

monponsett said...

Brett Favre is taking off 2 weeks in November to promote his bluegrass CD.