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Ron Artest

Is this a kinder, gentler Ron Artest we are witnessing? Doubtful … but there is something to be said about last night’s technical foul business against the Mavericks. What we have is Yao getting tangled up with Josh Howard and Ron-Ron running in to actually pull Yao away — after making contact with Howard.

Let’s go to the video:

Where do you stand? Did Artest deserve the technical or was this a case of guilty until proven innocent? I’m thinking no, but does the fact his reputation does proceed him — directly or otherwise. Maybe the refs were simply reacting to the way he ran up to Howard and Kidd, or maybe Reggie’s right: perhaps some latent memories about Ron remain.

Nevertheless, the Rockets beat the Mavs last night and Artest’s 29 point, 7 rebound effort contributed nicely. Is this the start of something beautiful for Ron, or, like a friend texted me last night, is Ron one elbow away from black-out style violence?