Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Ron Artest Hopes To Be Traded According To Source
This should come as a shock to no one, considering the recent rumblings that the Los Angeles Lakers would be actively looking to upgrade their roster and small forward is their most glaring need. According to this report by ESPN's Mark Stein, sources are saying that Ron Artest wants out of L.A. Here's some of the scoop from Stein:
The Lakers have been so uncharacteristically public about the potential benefits of an injection of new blood because they know, with a league-high $90.4 million payroll and such limited trade assets, that threatening this locker room with a shakeup move is a far simpler gamble to execute than shaking things up with an actual deal before the Feb. 24 trading deadline.
However ... I'm told that there's at least one prominent Laker who hopes he's the guy who gets shipped out in the next 20-odd days.
One source close to the situation insists that Ron Artest wants out.
Asked to react to that, Artest's agent David Bauman declined comment.
I'd never call myself an expert, but usually when an agent declines a comment in regards to his clients rumored demands something is up. Artest has admittedly been lost at times in the triangle offense and has even disinterested on defense, which is his calling card in the NBA. He's also admitted that he sees a shrink to help him with his psychological issues so this may just be crazy Ron on display. Here's a little more from the report:
I've nonetheless been assured this week that Artest -- though he hasn't outright demanded a trade and is likely to publicly deny it -- is serious about wanting to be dealt somewhere "he can have fun again" less than a year removed from the pivotal role he played in that ring-clinching Game 7 with Boston that the Lakers so nearly squandered.
An NBA player would rather go somewhere where he can "have fun" over playing for a legit title contender? Interesting. Maybe Ron Ron should schedule a few more sessions with that psychiatrist to help get his mind right.
Either way, the Lakers need to do something to shake things up. They have not played up to par against the other top teams in the league and at times they can look quite lethargic. And the Lakers aren't getting any younger with the majority of their core at 30+. Magic Johnson recently chipped in and said that maybe a change is needed to shake things up.
Hopefully something is done in Hollywood to wake this current edition of the Lakers up come playoff time. Every team in the league is gunning for them and it won't be that easy to just flip the switch and turn it on in April.