Owners of Dallas Maverickstickets did not expect this: the reigning Sixth Man of the Year is clearly not himself this season.
Struggling. This is a good description for the season that Dallas Mavericks forward Lamar Odom currently has right now. Ever since the failed trade before the start of the season with the Los Angeles Lakers, Odom has hit rock bottom which really affected his play on the court. Coming off perhaps his best season in his career, Odom’s numbers this season for the reigning champs is nowhere near that of the previous year. The 32-year-old New York native is averaging career-lows in minutes played (21.4), points (7.7), rebounds (4.5), assists (1.7), blocks (0.3), field goal percentage (36%), three-point percentage (26%), and free throw percentage (58%). The 2011-2012 is certainly a down season for the 13-year veteran out of Rhode Island University.
Back in December, Odom was supposed to go to New Orleans Hornets as part of the trade that would have sent all-star Chris Paul to the Los Angeles Lakers. The NBA nixed the trade and Odom was left in a state of shock. Odom did not felt good with the trade that’s why he asked to be shipped out of the Lakers. Days after the failed trade, Odom was sent to Dallas.
Owners of Dallas Maverickstickets were really happy about the trade since they would be getting a versatile player who could help in their quest for a back-to-back title. That aspiration, however, can be put to rest as of now since Odom has not come back to the team since he left before the all-star break. Reports said that Odom is attending to his ill father in Los Angeles and his return in a Mavericks uniform is not yet certain.
Latest reports states that Odom would be back on the court but it is not for Dallas yet. According to an article by Marc Stein of ESPN.com, the former Olympian would be playing for the Mavericks’ D-League affiliate for at least a game “to get his legs back under him.” Sources of Stein told that Odom would be practicing for the Texas Legends on March 2 and play for the Legends the following day.
Dallas management said that an update on Odom’s status would be made before their game against the Utah Jazz on March 3.
The Mavericks certainly need Odom right now. Dallas has lost three in a row and reigning Finals MVP Dirk Nowitzki is nursing an injury on his back. Though Nowitzki plans to play in Dallas’ upcoming game in New Orleans, the lower back tightness would likely limit his play at the start of the second half of the season.
Managing the minutes of two key players for Dallas would be vital in the team’s road for a back-to-back title. Keeping Jason Kidd and Dirk fresh heading to the playoffs would really help this team in the post season grind. Kidd is playing 28 minutes while Dirk logs 32 a game and maintaining those numbers would be beneficial for the team.
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