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Ron Artest, Rather Blunt and Honest

It seems like every other week we're getting some great quotes out of or about Ron Artest. This Michael Tillery interview on The Starting Five beats them all, though. A sample:

You have all kinds of athletes catering to the corporate world for endorsements. Yeah I would love to do that but I'll sacrifice that so the hood can get the attention it sorely needs. The ghetto needs someone always in their corner so they are not out there alone. When they see me come through, they just think I'm some hood dude. When people think of people like that, they think you are a thug that smokes weed and is always in the club. When I speak to people from the ghetto and kick a little bit of knowledge I've learned from experience, and try to help them learn from my experiences, they say, "Oh shit, this nigga is real!" This dude is real or whatever. I'm not some young, rich spoiled athlete that happened to be from the hood. My opinion of being ghetto and being hood is having intelligence while also being a strong person. I want to try to help those who are still stuck in the hood and let them know they can elevate themselves, learn from their mistakes, get an education and lead a better life.

God bless Ron Artest. I've always remarked the most endearing thing about Ron isn't his incredible self-confidence or his beastly desires on the court -- it's his honesty. He holds absolutely nothing inside, and that's so refreshing. This is a perfect example.

(Via Free Darko.)