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Sunday, January 10, 2010
Ron Artest: Asks out of Sunday's win over Milwaukee

By Brian Kamenetzky


Lori Shepler/AP Photo
Ron Artest is shaken up after colliding with Milwaukee's Michael Redd in the first half of Sunday's win.



Among the subplots in Sunday's 95-77 win for the Lakers over Milwaukee was the reasonably quiet and very abbreviated performance of Ron Artest, who played tonight in his fourth game since missing five with a concussion. Only 19:23 of burn, and there was some concern about his play after he collided with Michael Redd in the first quarter. Honestly, I didn't see the play, but it there was enough "there" there to prompt Artest to ask for a rest (answering the question of why Adam Morrison played so early). His health was a topic of conversation after the final buzzer.

Said Phil Jackson during his postgame media confab, "Tonight was kind of an interesting night. (Artest) had banged his head and I think it affected his game, when he went down with Redd early in the ballgame, no doubt... He asked out- he asked out of the ballgame twice over the course of that first and third quarter, so I put Adam (Morrison) in early, and gave him a little time to recover."

Q: Do you think it jarred him a little bit?

"It did."

Q: Are those knocks you talked about, Artest asking out, is this something that would require him to be re-evaluated?

"We'll discuss that. We'll talk about it with our staff a little bit. Most of it's about the inner ear and balance, you know, what's going on. I think that he may have felt a little dizziness or something afterward. He said he was okay, but then when he asked out of the third quarter, he mentioned that if this was a blowout, he'd just as soon not go back into the ballgame."

In the locker room, Artest himself didn't add much to the discussion, other than to say he felt okay, didn't hit his head, feels fine... and Phil's "always telling the truth. The Zen Master's never wrong." So go figure. Was there any dizziness? "Not really. When I fell, it was the first time I'd fallen (since the injury), so I was a little nervous," he said. "I'm glad we blew them out, though." Asked if he still felt any effects of the concussion, Artest said "no, I'm feeling beyond that."

Likely there will be more information Monday at practice before the team heads to San Antonio, but given the nature of Artest's injury, even the smallest of signs need to be monitored.