BIG3 - Week Eight

Source: Kevin C. Cox / Getty

There were few NBA players with a more unique story than Ron Artest. The Queensbridge native got his start with the Indiana Pacers, and quickly became one of the NBA’s most feared perimeter defenders, but also one of the league’s most volatile players.

His hot temper got the best of him in 2004 when an on-court rumble quickly spilled into the stands when a fan threw a soda at him as he was laying on the scorer’s table against the Detroit Pistons. What was infamously called “The Malice At The Palace” disrupted what was turning out to be a phenomenal year for Artest’s Pacers, ending with disappointment with Artest suspended for the remainder of the season.

He was able to rebound his career with the Los Angeles Lakers, where he won a title with the team in 2010, hitting one of the biggest shots in Game 7 of the Finals against the Boston Celtics.

His journey from hot-tempered underdog to champion could not have come to fruition without the help of his therapist as Artest has dealt with mental health issues for most of his life.

On May 31, Showtime will drop a new documentary about Artest —now Metta World Peace— and his struggle with mental health and how his rough upbringing in Queensbridge led to some of those issues and will even include never-before-seen footage of the infamous Malice At The Palace brawl.

The documentary, called “Quiet Storm: The Ron Artest Story,” comes at a time in which a lot of NBA players are becoming open about their own mental health issues, especially with depression and anxiety.

The timing of the documentary comes during Mental Health Awareness Month, and hopefully will help continue the effort to destigmatize mental health issues, especially in the black community where talking about these issues have been a taboo for generations despite a huge portion of the population dealing with these issues without treatment.