Los Angeles Lakers: name change

Ron Artest is officially Metta World Peace

September, 16, 2011
9/16/11
1:34
PM PT
Kamenetzky By Brian Kamenetzky
ESPNLosAngeles.com
Archive
There was a short period during my elementary school years when I wished my parents spelled Brian with a "y" instead of an "i." I thought it looked cooler, and if given a vote on the issue would have changed it. (I've since come around on the aesthetics of Brian with an i.) I have a neighbor who, as an adult, decided her given name simply didn't fit. It felt wrong, she believed, and wasn't her. She changed it.

As he's explained it, Ron Artest-- at long last officially Metta World Peace, having paid his outstanding debts to the DMV-- had no real problems with his name, but saw changing it as a way to send a more positive message to the world.

Sure, on its face it seems a little goofy, but by all accounts MWP kicked the idea around for a few years, and it seems to reflect an evolving and healthy perspective on his role in the world. (As opposed to a straight publicity stunt.)

Almost by definition, there is little in the world more personal than a person's name, which is why so many people today will likely look at Ron Metta and shake their head. I'll choose not to... while absolutely reserving the right to shake my head at some of the other stuff he does.

Sounds fair to me.

Metta World Peace is still Ron Artest

August, 26, 2011
8/26/11
10:47
AM PT
Kamenetzky By Brian Kamenetzky
ESPNLosAngeles.com
Archive
It's going to be a couple weeks before Ron Artest can use those new business cards.

Friday morning, a Los Angeles court commissioner delayed ruling on his proposed name change to Metta World Peace because the Lakers forward is apparently toting around a few outstanding traffic warrants. (Yes, I giggled a little, too.) Because whether renewing a drivers license or reinventing yourself to the world, nothing gets done until the state collects its bills. No ruling on whether he has to change back his already-converted Twitter handle.

The new hearing is set for September 16.

The Triangle: Thoughts on Metta World Peace

June, 27, 2011
6/27/11
1:20
PM PT
Kamenetzky By Andy Kamenetzky
ESPNLosAngeles.com
Archive
The K Bros and 710 ESPN's Dave Miller discuss Ron Artest's petition to legally change his name to Metta World Peace, and whether this should give us pause.

Ron Artest to change his name to "Metta World Peace"

June, 23, 2011
6/23/11
6:44
PM PT
Kamenetzky By Andy Kamenetzky
ESPNLosAngeles.com
Archive
Clearly, a decision Ron Artest made after he opted to clothesline J.J. Barea, but I digress.

In the latest piece of news surrounding the, shall we say, eccentric small forward, a petition was filed with the Los Angeles Superior Court to officially change his name to Metta World Peace. (I would make my usual "this is not a typo" joke, but given that we are talking about Ron Artest, would anybody actually assume that was a typo?) No word on how long this request will take to be approved, or if there's any reason he'd be denied, for that matter. In any event, the identity change falls in line with recent steps Ron has taken while bettering himself as a person and revamping his formerly tarnished image:

- Opening up about his time in therapy, while becoming an outspoken advocate for the mental health issues. (A matter we discussed at great length earlier this season.)

- Winning the 2011 J.Walter Kennedy Citizenship award for outstanding service and dedication to the community.

- Launching a new reality TV show, "Last Second Shot," in which he'll mentor parolees.

Thus, why not change his name to "Metta World Peace?" ("Metta," by the way, is defined as the Buddhist virtue of kindness.")

The one concern I might have for Ron is perhaps appearing like he's on the verge of jumping the shark. It's one thing to thank your psychiatrist before conducting a freewheeling, heartfelt press conference for the ages. It's another to adopt a very unusual moniker. Too many moves at once, however well-intentioned, could come off as cartoonish.

Still, Ron's heart does appear in the right place these days, so if this decision either helps spread his message or makes him feel like a properly evolving man, assuming his family's blessings are in place, who are we to cast judgment beyond a playful snicker?

However, there remains one important question to consider. Once the paperwork is official, is the nickname "Metta-Metta" or "World-World?" And what goes on the back of the jersey? Discuss among yourselves.

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