Mavericks coach Carlisle says “patience has worn thin” with Lamar Odom

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Lamar Odom was given away for virtually nothing by the Lakers to the defending champion Mavericks before the season even began, after Odom expressed a desire to be dealt once his name surfaced in legitimate trade rumors.

With Odom being the reigning Sixth Man of the Year, this seemed like an absolute steal for Dallas at the time. But it hasn’t materialized, and the team’s head coach seems to be tired of waiting.

Appearing on ESPN Dallas radio Friday, Rick Carlisle (via Tim MacMahon on Twitter) laid out very bluntly his feelings on the Odom situation, which no doubt echo those of Mavericks fans.

“I’m disappointed with the way the whole thing has gone,” Carlisle said. “Patience has worn thin here. He’s going to have to show us with his actions and his attitude if he’s in.”

The interview comes at a time when Odom is set to begin to get back to basketball, after missing the last few games due to personal reasons which were believed to be due to his father suffering with a serious illness. Odom will play a game in the D-League on Saturday as a way to get his wind back, a move that he had to authorize under the league’s new collective bargaining agreement.

Odom is averaging career lows in every relevant statistical category this season, so his absence isn’t exactly hurting Dallas all that much. What is painful, though, is that the organization knows the spark Odom may be able to provide if he can get his head straight.

Between the sensitivity Odom showed in demanding his way out of Los Angeles, along with the lack of production on the court and the time he’s missed because of problems off of it (legitimate or otherwise), it’s doubtful at best that the Mavericks will get anywhere near what they thought was face value when acquiring him.

The good news in Dallas is that they’re still a threat in the West, and easily a top-four team when clicking on all cylinders. A focused Odom might be able to push them into overdrive, which is why Carlisle and the rest of the squad likely haven’t given up on him entirely just yet.

Steve Kerr on Mike D’Antoni as Coach of the Year, “He’s earned it.”

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There are some strong candidates for NBA Coach of the Year this season. Brad Stevens has built up Boston over the past couple seasons, and they are now the top seed in the East. The Wizards are having their best season in a long time, and the players there credit new coach Scott Brooks. Quin Snyder has done a fantastic job building a culture and strong team in Utah. Eric Spoelstra didn’t allow the Heat to let go of the rope in the East when they were 11-30, and now they are on the cusp of making the playoffs. Gregg Popovich needs to be in the running every year because he is the best coach in the game.

However, Houston’s Mike D’Antoni is probably going to win the award. Golden State’s Steve Kerr – who won the award last year — is good with that, here is his quote via ESPN from after the Warriors beat the Rockets Tuesday night.

“I think the fit with the roster and Mike’s philosophy has been perfect,” Kerr said Tuesday night. “What he’s so good at is really giving his players confidence and belief. They’re obviously having an amazing year. My guess is that he’ll get the trophy. He’s earned it.”

Rockets GM Daryl Morey deserves a lot of credit for how good Houston has been. Unlike the front offices in New York and Los Angeles, when Morey brought D’Antoni in he went out and got role players who fit with the coach’s style of play. If you’re hiring D’Antoni, you’re doing it to play up tempo and take threes, and he needs the right roster to win that way. Morey gave him that.

Still, D’Antoni is the frontrunner for reasons beyond he’s the coach of the team that most exceeded expectations this season. He truly trusted James Harden in the point guard role and helped the beard elevate his game to MVP levels. He got the role players to buy in. He also has the Rockets playing decent — middle of the NBA pack — defense, which is better than many people expected (at times this season the Rockets have played actual good defense, they just don’t sustain it).

Kerr is right, D’Antoni deserves it.

 

 

Lamar Odom regrets affairs, says cocaine helped end career

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Lamar Odom says he’s “a walking miracle” after being found unconscious with cocaine in his system in a Nevada brothel in 2015.

Odom tells US Weekly he hid his cocaine use from ex-wife Khloe Kardashian for a while, but she found out about two years before their 2013 split. He also says that he regrets “having multiple affairs with different women” while married to Kardashian.

Kardashian filed for divorce in 2013 but delayed it after the incident at the brothel. He says Kardashian helped him regain his memory following the episode. Their divorce was finalized in December.

Odom blames cocaine for helping end his NBA career. He says “drugs killed my drive to want to train and be in shape.”

Odom says he’s sober now after finishing a rehab stint in January.

Here is some of the interview, however warning the language is not safe for work.

Warriors say Kevin Durant doing non-contact drills, could return before end of season

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Kevin Durant has been working out on the court before the last couple of Warriors road games, and people watching have taken note — he was moving well, shooting, and generally looking healthy for a guy coming off a grade 2 MCL sprain and a bone bruise.

Reports were out that Durant was on target to return before the end of the season.

Wednesday the Warriors confirmed that.

Teams are vague, realistically what is that timeline?

Durant likely would be on a minutes restriction for those game, but just getting to shake the rust off and work on his conditioning in a real game would help Golden State heading into the playoffs.

Not that they need much help, having won eight in a row. The Warriors have a 2.5 game lead over the Spurs for the top seed in the Western Conference heading into the game between the two Wednesday night.

Check out Lakers’ stretch of hitting 15 straight shots to end third quarter (VIDEO)

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The Lakers lost to the Wizards because they are young, inconsistent, and defend like traffic cones at times.

But that young Lakers core also has its moments.

Los Angeles strung together 15 straight made buckets to end the third quarter Tuesday night. Some of it was flukey, like Corey Brewer driving and finishing contested layups like he’s Kyrie Irving, but there were things Lakers fans should want to see such as D'Angelo Russell draining threes, Jordan Clarkson working hard off the ball and his teammates finding him, and Julius Randle just attacking.

After this run the Lakers led by 13 going into the fourth, but lost the game.