Lakers' Ron Artest says shaved head has nothing to do with loss to Orlando
Minutes after practice ended Monday, Lakers forward Ron Artest swished jump shot after jump shot. I hadn't counted right away, but when I kept hearing the net swish time after time, I managed to count seven shots in a row that finished with nothing but twine.
With Artest deciding to shave his head two days after dyeing it purple and gold, feel free to see it as a fresh start. I'm not the superstitious type myself, but if it makes you feel this is a sign Artest will immediately rebound from his two-for-10 clip Sunday against Orlando as well as from his poor defense on Vince Carter (25 points), then feel free. For those longing for Artest to look like Dennis Rodman, well, save the photo to the right because it had the shelf life of exactly one day. The only signs you could see of Artest's dyed look was the purple dye that read "defense" in three different languages, including Japanese, Hebrew and Hindi.
The video below doesn't reveal anything specific beyond it being vintage Artest. He says the new hairdo had nothing to do with his performance against Orlando, that his teammates didn't offer much of a response to the dye job and that Carter didn't say anything to him about it when they were on the court. Said Artest: "He's a good drummer. I asked when is the next time you're going to be playing drums or whatever, because I want to do some music with him."
Hmm, interesting. Hopefully it won't require time away from basketball like the rap album did.
Those wondering what the team thought of all the commotion will still be left with questions. Lakers guard Kobe Bryant didn't say a single word about Artest's old or new hairdo when asked about it. For those thinking that was a sign of disapproval, well, Bryant was testy Monday for the entire brief time he talked with the media.
As for Artest's take on whether he was instructed to shave his head, he paused for a few seconds. "Ummm, nah," Artest said smiling. "Nobody."
But what do you think? Do you like Artest's shaved look, wish he stayed with the purple or gold or think he should've just kept his hair the way it was? Vote below and share your thoughts in the comments section below.
-- Mark Medina
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Photo: Lakers forward Ron Artest, greeting Magic center Dwight Howard before tipoff Sunday, was sporting blond hair with purple letters, spelling "defense" in three languages. Credit: John Raoux / Associated Press