Sportress of Blogitude

Ron Artest Spoke Out About His Drinking, You Know, For The Kids

ron artest

Now I get it. Ron Artest’s recent comments about when with the Chicago Bulls, he would walk down to a liquor store near the United Center in Chicago to buy Hennessy so he could drink at halftime during games was all part of a grand plan of his to help out our nation’s youth. Makes sense, especially when you take into account that Artest is planning to open up a youth center in Los Angeles that that will assist young adults learn how to better manage temptations that all young adults face.

“You’ve got to watch who you look up to,” Artest said Thursday after practice at the Los Angeles Lakers’ training complex. “I’ve got some people who I wish I would not have looked up to, but I still love.”

Artest probably deserves the benefit of the doubt here, because I am certain he intended to perform this act of community service long before he alluded to his boozing basketball days and has absolutely nothing to do with damage control. In fact, Artest claims that he has openly and frequently discussed his drinking during games many times during his interactions with at-risk youth and I suppose we have no reason not to believe him.

“I understand I’m in a situation where I have to be a role model. I’m just in that situation, so that’s something I’m working towards. It’s not something I’m running from, but I have to tell people what I’ve been through, because when it comes up later, I’m not going to want it to be a shock. I tell people what I’ve been through, and I think it’ll help me be more of a role model for the future.”

Artest maintains that those alcohol-fueled days are well behind him, but will not reveal when they ended. In an interview with Associated Press sports writer Greg Beacham, Artest alluded to a “cleansing process” he has been going through since his days with Sacramento and he considered himself “98 percent cleansed in Houston” when he played there last season. According to my cleansing math, that only left him with 2% of cleansing remaining, so he might be all the way to 100% cleansed by now, which is good.

And as the ancient proverb goes, “cleansiness is next to Godliness.” Wait, “cleansiness” is not even a word, for crying out loud. But close enough, right? We are talking about Ron Artest here.

Lakers’ Artest spoke about drinking to help others [Yahoo!/AP]