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Ron Artest wants to change his jersey number

Ron Artest

Ron Artest's attention span appears as focused as a nat.

His gravitation toward the spotlight mirrors that of a moth.

Add those two ingredients together, and you have Artest in the news once again Friday for two reasons. A hearing scheduled for 9 a.m. at Los Angeles Superior Court will officially determine whether he can legally change his name to "Metta World Peace." It also will coincide with another beginning. Artest revealed to Yahoo! Sports' Marc Spears on the eve of his name change that he will also change his jersey number to 70 next season.

Those feeling like they have to buy a new Artest jersey every season either will have to end that addiction or simply get used to it. During his various stints with the Chicago Bulls, Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings, Houston Rockets and Lakers, Artest  wore No. 23 to honor Michael Jordan and then No. 91 to honor Dennis Rodman. The Nos. 93 and 96 were in reference to his hometown of Queens, N.Y. His first Laker jersey -- No. 37 -- paid homage to Michael Jackson's Thriller remaining at No. 1 for 37 consecutive weeks. His most recent number - 15 - paid homage to who knows what. This time, No. 70 has some sort of meaning.

“I’m changing it to 70 because it’s like something to do with the universe,” Artest told Yahoo! Sports. “Everything kind of repeats itself. The universe is one. It’s the same thing. Healthy minds, just keeping the kids positive.”

Click below the jump for more links

--NBA.com's Fran Blinebury explains how playing basketball helped calm Jerry West's nerves. 

--The Orange County Register's Kevin Ding explains Spero Dedes' conflicted feelings in accepting the New York Knicks broadcasting job and leaving his stint with the Lakers. 

--The Orange County Register's Jeff Miller pokes fun at the fact only 10 NBA players attended the regional meeting conducted by the players' association.

--Ball Don't Lie's Kelly Dwyer features A.C. Green's abstinence video. 

--ESPN Los Angeles' Andy and Brian Kamenetzky and 710 ESPN's Mark Willard looks at Kobe Bryant's achievements.

--Lakers Nation's Elizabeth Benson argues it wouldn't be a good idea for franchise players, including Bryant, to play overseas. 

Tweet of the Day: "Appreciate Jesse Rambis doing work on the beach volleyball courts this morning. Gotta say, he might be the best Rambis I've been coached by ... Haha I was being facetious people. Have nothing but love for the whole Rambis fam. You know this! #whysoserious" -- kevinlove (Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love)

Rick Friedman Reader Comment of the Day: "Kobe's work ethic is matched only by MJ. When it is all said and done, I think this will stand above everything else Kobe has done in his unbelievable career." -- Clifton H. Johnson

--Mark Medina

E-mail the Lakers blog at mgmedin@gmail.com

Photo: Lakers forward Ron Artest, who finished with 15 points, celebrates after blocking a shot by Celtics power forward Glen Davis in the fourth quarter of Game 1 on Thursday night. Credit: Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times / June 3, 2010

 
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