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Ron Artest admits to drinking during games, likes to have fun

December 2, 2009 | 11:27 am

Artest After disclosing last week that he used to ride in the Houston Rockets' team bus wearing only his underwear, Lakers forward Ron Artest told the Sporting News of another activity he used to do while playing with the Chicago Bulls (1999-2002).

"I used to drink Hennessy ... at halftime," Artest told the magazine. "I [kept it] in my locker. I'd just walk to the liquor store and get it."

It's good to know Artest gets his liquor like any other guy on the street, but I'm not so sure if drinking during games is such a great idea. Of course, this begs the question: Did Artest drink before the brawl at The Palace back in 2004?

Artest told the magazine the infamous brawl wasn't his fault and that he still doesn't "see anything I could have done different" to prevent the melee. He also told the Sporting News that he still likes to have fun.

"When I was a 19-year-old father, whew. I was a single pimp! I was wild. A lot of marijuana and alcohol.... I still party and I have fun, but not like I used to. I used to drink every night and party every night."

And to cap it all off, Artest even saved room for some commentary on NBA referee Joey Crawford, who officiated during two games of the 2009 Western Conference semifinals.

"Joey Crawford basically said, 'Who cares about the Houston Rockets? Kobe Bryant is on the floor.'"

The full story will be published by the Sporting News on Monday.

-- Austin Knoblauch

Photo: Ron Artest, right, drives past New Orleans' James Posey during the Lakers' victory on Tuesday. Credit: Andrew Gombert / EPA

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