It has been reported that Ron Artest is going to leave Houston in favor of the L.A. Lakers.
Wow, is all I can say after hearing this headline. Now, I am not surprised that he is leaving the Rockets… actually not surprised at all. With Yao out for the entire year next year, and possibly his career, and McGrady always injured, the Rockets are in re-build form. I know that, the Rockets know that, and Artest knows that… and that is not what he wants. He wants what everyone wants… a ring.
There were a lot of rumors that the Cavs wanted him, and I honestly thought that may be the place where he goes, and if he did, I must say I think the Cavs would have been the team to beat in the entire NBA. But no, he is going to go to the Lakers, which makes them even better… and ensures that they will not re-sign Ariza.
Ariza is reportedly talking with the Rockets, and the Cavs. If Artest is really going to go the Lakers, I expect the Cavs to go after Ariza hard, because they know that the Lakers don’t win the NBA Championship last season without Ariza. He meant that much to the Lakers and they still were refusing to give him more than $5.6 million (the mid level exception). What better revenge than to play for the team everybody wanted to play the Lakers in the Finals. *Update* Ariza verbally agreed to sign with the Rockets, even better for revenge– he will get to play against the Lakers in the Western Conference, too bad the Rockets might not even make the playoffs next season.
This means that the Cavs will still be looking for that wingman, defender to add as the final piece to the puzzle. It will be interesting to what their next move will be, now that their two main options are gone.