Lamar Odom is going to go down as one of the biggest disappointments in the history of the Dallas Mavericks organization. They thought they were getting the reigning 6th man, someone who could come in and replace some of the pieces they lost after their championship season. Instead they got a less-than-mediocre player who seemed so defeated that his old team wanted to let him go, that he couldn’t put in any sort of effort for his new team, and couldn’t even finish out the season.
Now that the season is over, the Mavs have to find a way to get rid of Odom by June 29 or pay him the $2.4 million guaranteed by his contract. This would be a huge hit because the Mavericks are most likely trying to clear enough cap space to offer a big deal to New Jersey Net Deron Williams.
While Odom doesn’t look like a very desirable player right now, the Mavericks have a recent history of turning around his type of contract for their gain.
“One of the things about Odom’s contract is it is a contract that is going to be very desirable because it is a large number with a small guarantee, like (Jerry) Stackhouse’s and like (Erick) Dampier’s deal,” said Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle on ESPN Radio in Dallas. “Those two contract situations turned into (Shawn) Marion and (Tyson) Chandler. Those were two important building blocks to a championship.”
Now the speculation begins on whether or not the Mavericks can find a way to unload Odom, and perhaps one other big contract on their team, in exchange for a player they need and still have enough cap space for Williams. ESPN is suggesting the Mavs could make a play for Los Angeles Laker Pau Gasol or New York Knick Amar’e Stoudemire.
If they could pull a solid player like that to go along with Deron Williams and Dirk Nowitzki, the Mavs could find their way back on top. Obviously, that’s a lot of speculating and it will require a lot of work and negotiating, but if it’s an option, the Mavs should do their best to try and make it happen. I’ve said before that Williams is good, but he’s not good enough to make this team into a contender by himself. With one more piece, that might change.