This image was lost some time after publication.

We say this with trepidation, because we've always kind of suspected, deep down, the guy was more complex than people thought, but it's time to part the cards on the table here: It's possible Ron Artest is just a dick.

We always gave him a little Manny Ramirez-esque, he's-a-flake-whaddya-gonna-do? leeway, but after he turned down a trade to Sacramento yesterday simply because he "must also ensure that his family is happy and content as well," we don't think it's so cute anymore. In fact, it's just kind of depressing: For all the "he's just a sweet, confused kid" prattle over the last year, at the end of the day, Artest is just one more guy complaining about how he has to feed his family. (Apparently the rap community in Sacramento is lacking.)


He has essentially become Terrell Owens ... except occassionally he jumps into the stands and starts beating up fans. He'll probably end up in Sacramento, where in a year he'll stuff a cowbell up some poor bastard's can after a tough loss to the Blazers, and we'll jump through all these hoops one more goddamned time.

King Of Sacramento [The Mighty MJD]
Ron Artest And Queen [J.E. Skeets]

(By the way, who unpacked Jim Gray? Every time he pops up somewhere, like he did in "breaking" this story, we think he was just woken up from a months-long slumber, wiped his eyes and starts making bleary phone calls denying trade rumors. And isn't he employed by, like, six different networks right now? How does that work again?)