Ron Artest’s long journey from being known as a mentally unstable thug to being known as a mentally unstable basketball champion was completed last night when his Los Angeles Lakers trumped the Boston Celtics in Game 7 of the NBA Finals (an event which, as tradition demands, was capped off by a feverish post-game makeout session between the two heated rivals). Artest, whose skill on the court has never been called into question, has long been maligned in both league and fan circles as a head case, a reputation that was solidified after he maniacally charged into the stands during a game and started brawling with fans back in 2005.
So how was Artest able to make the transition from being the most hated/feared man in sports to winning a coveted NBA championship ring? Simple! He spent some QT with a psychiatrist. And while it’s no longer taboo for athletes to admit that they confess their deepest fears to sports psychiatrists, most athletes tend keep their participation in these therapeutic sessions private. But not Ron Ron! He let his strong feelings for
Dr. Melfi Dr. Sandeep be known last night during a euphoric post-game interview with the mildly shellshocked ABC sideline reporter, Doris Burke, a moment that felt less like an interview and more like an Oscar acceptance speech:
“I definitely want to thank my doctor, Dr. Sandeep, my, uh, psychiatrist. She really helped me relax a lot. Thank you SO much. It’s so difficult to play with all this focus, and so much emotion in the playoffs. And she helped me relax, I thank you so much.”
And if that wasn’t shocking enough, the unfiltered Artest deftly transitioned from confessional mode into promotional mode and plugged his new rap song, “Champion,” that hits the streets soon. Most awesome post-game interview ever? We say yes.