Monday, November 29th, 2010 at 9:00 am  |  26 responses

Ron Artest, Phil Jackson Butting Heads?

by Marcel Mutoni / @marcel_mutoni

Trouble began to brew late Friday night in Utah, as Ron Artest dribbled around aimlessly in the fourth quarter before hoisting up an awful shot. Artest again made a few questionable decisions on the offensive end last night, as the Lakers lost in dramatic fashion to the Indiana Pacers at home.

Phil Jackson was unimpressed to say the least, and for the second consecutive game, he pulled Ron-Ron aside to discuss matters. Jackson wouldn’t divulge details of the chat, but Artest was more than happy to share.

Fox Sports has the quotes:

“He told me I should have called timeout when we got the offensive rebound,” Artest said. “Kobe wanted the ball. Kobe was going to hit a three. When I saw Kobe, I was going to give it to him. I asked (Jackson), could everybody else on the court call timeout since I had the ball? And he said yes.” Artest paused and then smiled. “He forgot to address it with everybody,” he said. “But that’s OK.”

Jackson declined to detail what he said to Artest, preferring to keep it private. Artest said he was comfortable with his role, but noted that his feelings were irrelevant. “I listen and I take in the good, what can help me. But then I’ve also got to be like I made it this far for a reason,” said Artest, whose 3-pointer brought the Lakers within 89-86 and got the crowd on its feet. “How do I not be selfish but at the same time listen? I’m sure he didn’t want me to take that last three tonight. It’s all about playing and trying to figure out a way. We’ll be OK.”

Last season, Jackson routinely criticized Artest’s decision-making in the triangle offense, and during some heated moments during the Playoffs, he flat-out instructed his team not to pass him the ball.

It’s very early in the season, but worth noting that Ron Artest is averaging career lows in both points and minutes. On a loaded, winning team, there aren’t many opportunities for him to shoot, and when he does, the scrutiny is unrelenting.

It will be interesting to see how the player/coach relationship evolves as the season progresses, especially when things don’t go according to plan for the Lakers.

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  • http://ohlaglambam.blogspot.com Zabba

    Sounds just like constructive criticism to me.

  • Vc

    I don’t recall pj telling the team not to pass it to Kobe when he has his me against the world manic episodes and jacks long contested twos (and don’t pretend he never does Kobe slurpers)

    Free Ron Ron. No one complained about that game
    7 3 when the Greatest of All Time went 6 for 24 either.

  • AT33

    Artest is too dumb to play for Phil. He’s not coachable either.

  • Omar

    AT33, you do realize that the Celtics would be the champs if not for Ron Artest?

  • http://www.nba.com Gman

    ^ boom. Game over.

  • mytiman

    I’m sure Rodman had these kinds of confrontations with the Zen master. But he did help Jordan and the Bulls win 6 rings. Just goes to show, life in the NBA isn’t perfect.

  • reflex

    Vc, your bitterness & hate is tangible. Stay mad

  • K.a.

    Rodman didnt chuck threes and stop ball movement.

  • letsmotor

    K.A. is right. yeah, Rodman was crazy, but i don’t recall him making in game decisions as bad as Ron’s are sometimes. then again, Omar is right also. Ron just needs to figure out when the team needs him to be Ron Artest the crazy man and when they need him to just be a Laker.

  • Ali

    Neither of these guys are ones to not speak their mind. Nothing new there! Phil having a issue with a player, Nothing new there! Ron Ron saying whats on his mind, Definately nothing new there! Only reason this is news because they lost a tough game where that Pacers center killed them! Iron it out, and move on.

  • http://www.twitter.com/TheDiesel Anton

    I don’t know no psychiatrist that come off the bench.

  • ShadiestBen

    vc – Those 24 points (however he scored them) and 15 boards were irrelevant in game 7.
    Aside from that, this is a non story Artest seem’s more content now than he’s ever been.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/ niQ

    “as Ron Artest dribbled around aimlessly in the fourth quarter before hoisting up an awful shot.”
    Deja Vu. That scene described sounds so familiar…

  • LA Huey

    I like to imagine Phil routinely uses the phrase “Kiss the rings” during disagreements/arguments with players in his Lakers tenure.

  • ShadiestBen

    With Artest you have to take the rough with the smooth, as stupid as vc’s comment was he’s correct about Artest in game 7. He may have been the 1 guy in the whole arena who didn’t seem to feel the pressure.

  • Robb

    misleading title

  • thegfunk

    Rodman didnt chuck threes? Watch him in the wcfinals on the spurs!

  • http://theurbangriot.com The Nupe

    They’ll work it out. Ron Ron likes winning too much to make this a big deal, and Phil understands that he needs Ron. I just wonder if any of the players say anything to him.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Negative Kreep

    If Jackson is acting like he’s mad at Ron imagine the venom he must have for Pau’s effort on the defensive end? Pathetic.

  • rainman

    “but i don’t recall him making in game decisions as bad as Ron’s are sometimes”

    ur KIDDING right? Rodman used to grab offensive rebounds at times, and run to the perimiter and jack up jump shots, that were awfully close to three. After a few of these posessions tho, PHil would just tell him to stick to what he does best, and that’d be that. Which is the difference between Rod and Ron…


    Oops! Phil did it again.

  • EtheKnickfan

    Its not like he dribbled around aimlessly before running into the crowd and beating some drunken idiot senseless. THAT would be bad, I mean, who dribbles around aimlessly? Heard Phil also called Kobe out for not sticking his tongue out before every shot.

  • http://www.nbaballhog.wordpress.com God in Basketball Shoes

    Rodman did take questionable three’s. PJ is smart enough to take the good with the bad. He’s just attempting to minimise the bad which I’m sure Ron understands

  • Justin

    The difference (well, one of them) between Rodman and Artest is that Rodman had an incredibly high basketball IQ. You can question a lot of his antics and his tactics but you can’t deny his knowledge of the game. Rodman respected Jackson a hell of a lot too, as well as Michael. You can see in videos when Rodman would be chirping at the referees during a free throw Michael would say “That’s enough Dennis” and he’d back up right away. I don’t think there’s anyone on that team, Kobe included, that Artest would hold in that kind of esteem.

  • Spade

    @Justin – Ron is enamored with Kobe….i am sure he will back down if Kobe tells him to….but its better for the ballclub if the criticism comes from the coach and appreciation comes from the main player. call it good cop – bad cop.
    this whole thing is inconsequential anyway….must be a slow day

  • Justin

    Enamored is a little strong don’t you think?