Ron Artest's Name Change Could Happen in Time for 'DWTS'

ron artestBefore Los Angeles Lakers forward Ron Artest tries to show that he's got the fancy footwork to win the 13th season of Dancing With the Stars, the player wants to to pull a Prince. In other words, he wants to change his name to something totally wacky: Metta World Peace. But there's a hitch: He can't do it until he clears up some outstanding traffic warrants.

A Los Angeles judge laid down the law on the athlete in court recently. Given that he follows the judge's orders and takes care of the traffic business, he'll probably get his name change granted at a hearing on September 16.

Oh man. I hope he's ready to be the butt of many a sports world joke for some time. Although it is definitely kinda funny, I do sort of feel for the guy, at least after reading about the rationale behind the name change ...


See, "Metta" is a Buddhist word with various definitions along the lines of "loving kindness." Aww. The former troublemaker, who sparked a huge brawl between fans and players when he played for the Indiana Pacers in 2004, seems to want to take on the moniker to "promote unity." In attempts to turn his life around, he's already become an advocate for mental health issues and raising money for the cause, but I guess he thinks the name change would take his efforts to a whole different level.

He explained:

It’s just about love, world peace, everybody can relate to that. Whether it’s in the same community or same state or same country, or whether it’s country to country going to war, it’s just like world peace, you know what I mean? And kids need to know that and they know it now.

A whole different level of crazy? Maaaaybe. But meh. There are worse things a guy could do, you know? If he genuinely wants this name change and thinks it will help him stay on track, then more power to him. Sure, we're not going to be able to help ourselves from cracking jokes about it, but it's okay. I'm sure he's prepared for the snark that is soon to follow. (Especially since he's gonna be on DWTS!) And if he is as "lovingly kind" as he seems to want to be, then he'll handle the teasing with patience and grace.

What do you think of Artest's name change?

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