You talked the other day about how more Americans should be allowed to play in Eruope. Would you consider playing there down the road?
Ron Artest: After I’m done with my basketball career, I want to box and I wanna play football –probably tight end position. I’ve been training for three years for boxing. Probably after this contract, I’ll probably do football first and then boxing. I’m definitely serious about those two things I wanna do. I wish I could do it now.
Which place would be the most appealing for you to play basketball?
Ron Artest: Maybe not right away but as the development starts to get better, as you get more Paus and Dirk Nowitzkis, Rubios, and the talent stuff gets better and the coaches get better in Europe, then they should release let American players play, because is harder for a lot of Americans to get jobs overseas to play basketball. You get a guy from Europe or Asia, that takes a job from an American person. To make it even, they should let the American players play. And somebody from Europe shouldn’t be able to play in China, and somebody from China shouldn’t be able to play in Europe. If you get kids growing up wanting to play the game of basketball, and then there’s no jobs available… Why even tell them to play basketball? you might as well tell them to be a teacher.
How long do you plan on keep on playing basketball?
RA: Probably after this contract and then I’ll play football and boxing.
Is there any workout better than the boxing wourkout to be in shape?
RA: Boxing is good, but basketball is definitely the best workout.
Marcus Camby told me the other day he would retire if he’s not a rotation player anymore because he’s too proud to be sitting on the bench. How would you react if it happened to you?
RA: I don’t mind. Right now, even if somebody was coming here and take my spot, as long as we win as a team, that’s all that matters.
Has your NBA career lived up to your own expectactions?
RA: Nah, I’m not finished. As of right now I feel I could accomplish what I wanna to accomplish. I got a ring, the All-Star… Individual succes is not that important. It’s more about what you do as a team.
Being a Laker and an NBA champion, has the endorsement area improved at all for you?
RA: Different companies want a different image. A lot of companies don’t want my image, but I can’t change, I’m always going to stay the same person. It’s alright.
What’s the biggest perk about being a Laker?
RA: Playing for Coach Jackson. You got a chance to play for a great coach.
What’s the proudest moment as a Laker aside from the ring? Maybe stopping Kevin Durant in the playoffs?
RA: That was tough. He’s a good player. I had the challenge, the opportunity, the assignment to guard him and it was fun.
What’s the key to stop a guy like him?
RA: You gotta be Ron Artest. If you’re not Ron Artest, you don’t have a chance!
Is there any player that gets you extra motivated when you play against him?
RA: Everybody is the same.
What drives you at this point of your career?
RA: It’s really about the preparation, just loving play. You really don’t have to have no drive. All you gotta do is love what you do and everything else will come behind.
You’re very active on Twitter. A lot of players got into trouble, but you didn’t.
RA: You gotta watch what you say, but it is a free country so you can say what you want.