Daniel Artest is not only the brother of newest Knicks forward Metta World Peace, but also as an ambassador to the game of basketball. Not playing organized basketball until his freshman year of college, Daniel turned into a quality ball player with stints in the NBA Summer League and overseas.
An avid fan of the San Antonio Spurs, Daniel is an extremely knowledgeable basketball mind. With his playing career behind him, he strives to spread the game of basketball to the youth and show them the power basketball can have in their lives. On behalf of everyone at Knickswag, I’d like to thank Daniel for his time and willingness to share his insight on the Knicks and the NBA as a whole. Also, I’d like to extend a warm welcome to Daniel Artest and his family to the Knicks family. Here is my interview with Daniel:
1. Do you feel there is a misconception of your brother around the NBA? Do you think he has improved his image over the past few seasons?
DA: Yes. There is this misconception of Ron as some bad guy based off his past, but it’s more fan opinion than the NBA players. As far as changing his image, that’s yes and no. Ron always stayed true to himself. Image, in my opinion, is what the public sees you as. Society will judge you by the way you live life.
2. Take us back to draft night 1999. What was the general feeling of your family when the Knicks selected Frederic Weis, one pick before the Bulls took Ron?
DA: I was 16 at the time. I really didn’t care for it. I was just happy to be there. My family wasn’t really bothered by the Knicks passing Ron up. We were just excited Ron got drafted.
3. What is the feeling now that it all comes full-circle?
DA: Home sweet home.
4. What was the buzz like in Indiana when the Pacers eliminated the Knicks in last year’s playoffs? Also, what are the expectations in Indiana entering next season for the Pacers?
DA: I was actually in Los Angeles during the NBA playoffs so I didn’t get to hear the buzz in Indianapolis. As far as the Pacers going into next season, they’re going to have a great team. They have great players in the starting lineup, and also a great bench. They should really compete for the NBA title If they stay healthy. I believe the Pacers will go very far this season.
5. After reading some of your tweets, I noticed numerous tweets about the importance of having “Goons” on your roster. How do you feel about the Knicks “Good Squad” entering next season? How well do you think your brother fits into that role in New York?
DA: My brother will fit in well in New York. He brings a defensive intensity that the Knicks really could use. He also will help offensively some nights if Melo is having an off game I really like the way the Knicks are looking right now. They have a balance of scoring and defense, and defense wins championship.
6. I hear that you are a San Antonio Spurs fan. How did you become a Spurs fan and when did you begin following?
DA: I’ve been a fan of the San Antonio Spurs since I was 10 years old in 1992 the year I started to play basketball. Just like David Robinson, my dad was in the navy. My dad always talked about Robinson as being a standup guy, so I just followed my dad’s lead and started liking David Robinson, and my love for the Spurs grew.
7. When was the first time you entered MSG? Can you describe the emotions you felt walking into such a historic venue?
DA: Well I’ve been to Madison Square Garden a lot, it really didn’t hit me as a historic venue until I actually played on the Garden floor when I was playing street ball for the Entertainers Basketball Classic also known as Rucker Park.
8. Growing up and playing pick-up games with Ron, how physical would they get? And did you ever come out victorious against your brother?
DA: Ron and I always work out together. We never played one on one versus each other. We just try to make each other better every day.
9. I see you played college ball at Westchester CC, averaging 18 points and 12 boards a game. Being from Ulster County, I wonder if you have any recollection of playing Ulster County Community College, and how badly you torched them.
DA: Yes, I have the stats from the game. I ended up that game with 23 points and 16 rebounds.
10. Describe your basketball career after your days at Westchester CC. Where did you play and how did you fair in your time professionally?
DA: I played in Greece, Germany, and the minor leagues in the United States .I also played in the NBA summer league with the Sacramento Kings and the Los Angeles Lakers. I was mostly a sixth man on teams that I played for. My career averages is 14 points per game and nine rebounds per game as a sixth man. I have had a great basketball career in my opinion, and now I just want to teach the game to the kids. Show the youth that they don’t have to take the road I took that they can always do better.
DA: I am Daniel M Artest and I approve this message.
I want to thank Daniel for a great interview, and I want to let him know that he is welcome here at Knickswag.com whenever he wants to come by for a chat. Thanks Daniel!