Ron Artest Now Known as Metta World Peace

Metta-World-PeaceA Los Angeles court has made it official. Ron Artest no longer exists. In his place is Metta World Peace.

Artest’s petition for name change was approved by the court on Friday, allowing the 31-year-old NBA star to officially begin using the name Metta World Peace. The approval came three weeks late after it was discovered that the man previously known as Ronald William Artest Jr. had unpaid traffic tickets. Based on his request, Artest’s new last name is now World Peace.

Metta World Peace said in a statement that his name change was aimed at uniting the youth of the world. “Changing my name was meant to inspire and bring youth together all around the world,” he said, according to the Associated Press. “After this short delay, my tickets have been paid and I’m glad that it is now official.”

World Peace, who is set to appear as a celebrity contestant on the new season of “Dancing with the Stars,” is the latest of several sports stars who also changed their names. Among the most famous ones are Muhammad Ali (Cassius Clay) and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, Jr.).