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Michael Jackson tribute ends, Ron Artest switching to No. 15 jersey

Aug 20, 2010, 5:45 PM EDT

Thumbnail image for artestwins.jpgMichael Jackson’s “Thriller” was a seven-hit wonder, but Ron Artest’s tribute to the pop star turned out to be a one-year wonder.

Ron Artest will be switching to No. 15 next season, the number he wore at St. John’s in college and his first three seasons in the NBA, according to Kevin Ding of the Orange County Register. Artest actually put in the request late last season.

When he came to the Lakers, Artest said he chose No. 37 as a tribute to the late pop star Jackson, whose “Thriller” was atop the Billboard charts for 37 weeks and spawned seven top-10 singles.

Artest has worn six numbers in his NBA career (15, 23, 91, 93, 96 and 37).

This move is actually a little Kobe-like — Bryant switched from 8 to 24 as part of an image makeover, but he also wore 24 in high school. This is a move back to a number from Artest’s roots. How long that lasts is anybody’s guess.

  1. Omnius - Aug 21, 2010 at 9:20 AM

    Sounds like a slow news day when Ron Artest switching uniform numbers makes the news. I like his number switch because that puts his uniform number in line with Gasol and Bynum in the mid teens, 15, 16 & 17. I can’t wait to see the new improved Repeat World Champion Lakers start the new season as they will Threepeat next June. Kobe Bryant is the greatest player in the NBA!

  2. 2Phatt - Aug 21, 2010 at 11:55 AM

    Ron Ron must continue to take his meds, are were subject to see anything from the former THRILLER.

  3. Nick - Aug 22, 2010 at 3:31 PM

    Kobe may not even be a top 5 player in the NBA these days, sorry, its the truth though. The Lakers do have a great team however, and Gasol is very underrated. I would favor them to win the title again in 2011.

  4. dominick clayton - Aug 31, 2010 at 1:00 PM

    way to go ronni boi

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