Ron Artest changes his name

OW Staff | 12/28/2011, 5 p.m.

NBA superstar and Los Angeles Laker Ron Artest officially changed his name to Metta World Peace.

The guard made the request in June, but his wish was delayed until he took care of a few pesky traffic tickets.

The change came as a big surprise; much of the public was a bit taken aback questioning his sanity.

But Artest, who has admitted in the past he visits a psychologist just to keep it together, has contemplated the change for years.

His publicist, Courtney Barnes, told reporters the new name came after going back and forth with names and finding something inspirational.

Artest always knew he wanted his last name to be World Peace, "but it took many years of research and soul searching to find a first name that was both personally meaningful and inspirational," Barnes said.

Metta in the Buddhist tradition means loving-kindness and friendliness toward others.