Del Negro not worried by Odom’s slow start

Image: OC RegisterAfter failing to make a decent contribution to the Mavericks, Lamar Odom has to be out to prove that his time in Dallas was just a fluke and he can return to form with the Los Angeles Clippers.

So far, that’s not going so well.

Odom is only playing 11 minutes a game, averaging 1.6 points and two rebounds. He clearly hasn’t fit in yet with the Clippers’ roster, and is far from the Sixth Man of the Year Award winner he was just two seasons ago.

Despite his limited involvement, Clippers head coach Vinny Del Negro isn’t worrying.

"It's going to take a little time," Del Negro said. "I'm very comfortable with his work ethic. I'm very comfortable with his approach… He has such a good feel for the game, he can make plays out there. He sees plays offensive or defensively out there because of his experience."

Odom’s time in Dallas definitely did more harm than good, so he’s got a lot of work to do to get back to the player he was. He’s also hindered by bruises in both knees that caused him to miss the last two weeks of the preseason.

All the Clippers can do is play him a little at a time and hope Odom gets back into shape. For now, they’re doing just fine without him, sitting atop the Pacific Division. Odom says as long as the Clippers are rolling along, he doesn’t feel pressured to rush things.

"If our record is 5-2 and I'm taking steps in the right direction, that's all I can do," Odom said. "It's all about staying positive and understanding the big picture. There's no way I can get it back after missing a year and a half… It takes time and I'll stay the course."

Obviously the Clippers’ roster is pretty stacked, they’re one of the most talented teams in the NBA. They’re doing well without Lamar Odom playing to his full potential, if he gets back to peak form, it will just be a big bonus.

Image: OC Register