Sports Briefs: The Quest for World Peace

(Sponsored by 3 Spoons Yogurt)

Chris: What do all of the contestants of the Miss America, Miss World and Miss Universe beauty pageants have in common? All want World Peace. This is the strongest theory yet as to why Ron Artest changed his name.

Joe: Ron Artest has been in and out of trouble most of his career. His childhood days were spent in a rough neighborhood. His recent name change is an example of him trying to change his life and trying to make a fresh start. He does not seem to have been a happy person.

Brad: I don't think much of him as a person overall. I think it's great that he found something to bring him above his youth, but he didn't seem to loose his “street type attitude.” It's like he can't represent his background without giving in to stereotypes.

Ralphie: If he weren't grown up, he'd be grounded all the time. I think he might be trying to start over, though.

Chris: New York has a number of pageants throughout the year, including Miss New York, Miss Liberty, Miss Mohawk and the Perfect Face Pageant Queens of Christmas. Artest himself could have competed in the Miss Mohawk contest a few years ago, had he been able to bamboozle the judges into believing he was a female with a mohawk. However, if the Detroit Pistons fan Artest punched during the 2004 Palace Brawl had been wanting to compete in the Perfect Face competition, Artest ended that dream for him.

Brad: I think Ron Arrest can be a great player at times, but I think he displays a lot of poor sportsmanship with his on-court fighting over the years. He seems to like to take cheap shots at opposing players.

Joe: I think Ron Artest changing his name is a sign of how miserable Ron is with himself. I believe he is trying to distance himself from his past and start a fresh life. The selection of "World Peace" seems strange and probable indicates trouble from his past. Unless he changes his behavior, changing his name will only be a temporary transition back to the old Ron.

Ralphie: I think it's a weird name, but I think it shows he's trying to change. Still, it seems like he could have come up with a better name than that.

Brad: Changing your name to something like Metta World Peace is just trying to get attention. Maybe he just wants people to yell “World Peace” at games. Maybe he thinks he is promoting a good cause.

Chris: Artest did consider changing his name to Candy, Taco Bell, Help or Time, all of which would have been considerable self-esteem enhancers any time anyone said “I want candy” or “I need help.” In fact, I may consider changing my own name to A Nap.

Joe: Ron Artest going to the Knicks will hopefully make the Knicks and the Lakers better. If Ron takes advantage of this new opportunity and keeps a clean slate on and off the court, the Knicks will be a contender.

Ralphie: I think he'll do a good job for the Knicks. I hope he makes some friends on the team who will be a good influence on him.

Brad: Going to the Knicks might be a great move. It will bring him back to his stomping ground and remind him what is important. If he doesn't get injured, I think he will have a good season, and I think he will help take the Knicks to the playoffs.

Chris: How well he does on the Knicks will depend on if Coach Mike Woodson gives World Peace a chance. The Knicks could also benefit by trading for Minnesota’s starting power forward. That would give them a frontline of Love and World Peace. Or if Artest had followed through with his desire to play Arena Football or play basketball overseas, he could have brought World Peace to China or maybe Orlando.

Ralphie: Playing in China or playing arena football will be fine when he's too old to play for the NBA. He'd be pretty dumb to give up the money and the fans he gets from the NBA before it's time.

Joe: Ron's earning potential is greatest in the NBA, as long as he can contribute, and then possibly Europe and China would extend his career and provide a change of "hoods."

Brad: Playing sports with different cultures around the world would be a great experience for any athlete, not just World Peace. I think maybe he originally wanted to just get away to a new playing scene, but either way, I think it would be a good plan. That would be a great follow-up to a good season with the Knicks.

Chris: Regardless of how long Artest stays with the Knicks, his services will always be in demand. I would say there will never be a shortage of people wishing for World Peace or A Nap.

Joe: I think Ron Artest is a talented player and has been on a championship team. He has good skills or he would not have made it this far.

Ralphie: He's a really talented player and if he'll behave the right way, he'll have a good career.

Try on a new pair of Sports Briefs with the Gab Four every Friday. Find out more about Joe, Chris, Brad and Ralphie, and read their solo columns on their individual pages.

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