In the world of professional sports
no athlete ever came back
from a mental health disorder....until Ron Artest.
Quiet Storm: The Ron Artest Story
Saturday March 30
Museum of the Moving Image
"I wanna thank my psychiatrist." Those were the five words RonArtest said immediately after hitting the game clinching shot that sealed the 2010 NBA title for the LA Lakers. Johnny Sweet, the filmmaker, was in the ESPN production truck when that happened. He recalls that "Half the room laughed...half the room was silent. Whether he meant it to be have such a huge impact or not, Ron saved lives that day simply by being honest and guileless. I'm obviously beyond biased by saying this...Ron is the most important basketball story in the game's history."
SUMNER REDSTONE THEATER
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Ronald Artest, now known as Metta World Peace, was born on November 13, 1979 in Queens, New York. He lived in the Queensbridge Houses, a complex of six-story buildings north of the 59th street bridge. In 1997, after fielding offers from several colleges, Artest decided to attend St. John's University in Queens. In his Freshman year, Artest was named to the Big East's All-Rookie and All-Tournament teams, and the St. John's Red Storm went 22-10, advancing to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1993.
Ron Artest was drafted by the Chicago Bulls and would average 12 points per game. In the early 2000s, the Bulls traded him to the Indiana Pacers. He won the NBA Defensive Player of the Year award in 2004. After requesting a trade from the Indiana Pacers, Artest joined the Sacramento Kings, the Houston Rockets, and eventually the Los Angeles Lakers. While playing for the Lakers, Artest earned his first championship ring.
Ron Artest has struggled with anxiety and depression since he was a kid. His candidness and openness about his struggles with mental health has created a big shift in the NBA. A long lasting stigma among athletes is now fading as more come forward to discuss the importance of mental health and the struggles they face. Artest legally changed his name to Metta World Peace in September of 2011 in an effort to "inspire and bring youth together all around the world."