Lamar Odom’s fall from Sixth Man of the Year and NBA title holder to guy the Dallas Mavericks told to just go away and don’t come near the rest of the players was fast and public.
Odom invited it all in when he married a Kardashian and became a reality television star, but when he was just not mentally ready for the season he became public enemy No. 1 in Dallas. (Well, No. 2, No. 1 is always Tony Romo.) He became the scapegoat for a disappointing season in Dallas following their title run, lockout and roster makeover.
Then ESPN’s Ric Bucher tweeted this (hat tip Ball Don’t Lie):
Lamar Odom, unprompted, told me he’d like to apologize to Mark Cuban and Mavs fans for not being himself. Felt it was beyond his power.
— Ric Bucher (@RicBucher) September 28, 2012
Cuban declined to comment at Mavs camp, which is the smart move. Take the high road here.
I’m a fan of his, but Odom was woeful as a member of the Mavs. He is a guy who struggles to compartmentalize life on and off the court. That summer before he was in New York for the funeral of a cousin when a car he was in (not driving) struck and killed a 15-year-old. The lockout came and he wasn’t motivated. He showed up to training camp out of shape and disinterested, and things spiraled down from there. Mavs fans have a reason to be frustrated, Odom has always been talented and enigmatic, but this was as bad as he has been.
Now he is a Clipper (although reports are he didn’t exactly show up to camp in peak shape) and I expect him to have a better season. He is back in his comfort zone, and you can bet Chris Paul and Blake Griffin will push him. Hard.
As for Odom and Dallas, it’s really best if both sides moved on and tried to forget about it. No reason to dwell on the past.