Tuesday, April 10, 2012

In Defense of Lamar Odom

Let's say that... I make you wealthy beyond your wildest dreams. I create a situation in which your work gets you paid beyond your ability to realistically spend, to the point where you can provide for you and yours. Let's put that net worth at, oh, say, $56 million.

Now, I take you from the place where you've chosen to live, the only place you really want to be. And I send you to the middle of Redneck Texas, where nothing is the way you like it.

I'm also going to do this to you at a time in your career when your physical condition is starting to go down, and your job isn't as much fun as it used to be. Finally, I'm going to have you married to a high-maintenance celebrity wife, and give you the ability to make money outside of your job through acting.

Now... why on earth would you keep doing the job in Redneck Texas?

What I've just described is, of course, the saga of Lamar Odom with the Dallas Mavericks, who have just parted ways in one of the least amicable ways imaginable. Odom never wanted to be in Dallas, never wanted to be part of a franchise that was defending the title won over his Lakers, and has spent the last six months wondering what he did to deserve Phil Jackson going away, his primo spot with the Lakers going away, and why he's good enough to play for Team USA in international games, but not good enough to get starter's minutes in LA or Dallas.

You know what I'd do if I were him?

Well, I'd probably grind out a role and play, because I'm very, very stupid like that, and I'm not worth at least $56 million, with a seaming taste for the weed, and the desire to bang a reality TV skank.

Your mileage, and Lamar's, may vary.

No one should be surprised that this came out the way it did, or think that slagging Odom is going to make a minute of difference to him.

(Oh, by the way? The next time you hear someone talk about how you need to have heart, courage, commitment and a raft of other sweet-smelling unreality to Be A Champion, remember that Lamar has rings. Several of them, actually.)

So, one final question, and I'll leave this 32-going-on-done big man with handle and versatility be...

Why is everyone harshing on Odom, rather than the Mavericks, who clearly did no homework whatsoever in trading for him?

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