CLEVELAND—Gingerly stepping around several of the largest wet patches on the floor, local Indians fan Mark Freel reportedly assured himself Tuesday that at least some of the liquid covering the ground of the men’s bathroom at Progressive Field was most likely water.
INDIANAPOLIS—Just over one year since Ron Artest climbed into the stands at the Palace of Auburn Hills and took a swing at a fan, resulting in a suspension, a fine, and an empty stocking, the Pacers forward said that he has learned from his mistakes, and knows that any misstep on or off the court during the 2005 holiday season could severely hurt his chances of getting that pony he's been asking for. "Last year, I let my emotions get the best of me—I let down my teammates, my fans, my family, myself, and Santa," Artest said. "Now that I know I'm being watched and scrutinized, I'm going to make an extra-special effort to be nice, whether it means keeping my temper in check during an in-game flare-up, or helping do chores around the house. It's the only way to earn back the respect I need to get Princess." Artest added that after Christmas, any critics, opponents, or fans "better be on their best behavior," as he is making a New Year's resolution to punch someone.