Some were surprised that Ron Artest, Los Angeles Lakers’ small forward, would join the cast of hit reality show Dancing With The Stars. However, Artest said he will take on the challenge for his cancer fighting daughter.
Although Artest agreed to join the season 13 cast of DWTS, he told People magazine that he needed to be coaxed into the decision. The rambunctious small forward said his 8-year-old daughter Diamond inspired him to do the show.
"At first it was not appealing," Artest told People. "I did not want to do it. I don't dance and all of the dressing up and everything, but my daughter Diamond was like, Daddy, you should do it."
With an NBA lockout freeing Artest from his basketball obligations for the moment, Artest said he thought about playing the game overseas. Instead, the 31-year-old decided to take the opportunity to dance for a good cause after hearing the request of his daughter, who survived cancer at the age of four.
"I had a chance to play basketball overseas and I had a chance to do Dancing with the Stars," Artest told People. "She asked me to do it, and I thought I could dance and raise some money for cancer research. I'm going to donate the profits."
Artest will join the season 13 cast along with Kim Kardashian’s brother Rob, actor David Arquette, reality television star Kristin Cavallari, former talk-show host Ricki Lake, television journalist Nancy Grace and the transgender child of Sonny and Cher, Chaz Bono. The show will premiere on Monday, Sept. 19.
The NBA player promised his fans who tune in a good time.
“I have a lot of entertaining things to come," he said.
Although Artest seems to be prepared for the challenges provided by the dancing competition, it seems he has not yet thought about what would happen if the lockout ends and the NBA season resumes.
"I'll cross that bridge when it comes," Artest told People.