No matter where Lamar Odom ends up next season, it’s almost guaranteed to be somewhere outside of Dallas. The Mavs don’t want him back, and whether they find a trade partner or simply have to waive the disgruntled forward, he won’t be playing in Big D.
Odom needs a beach to survive. It’s pretty much a fact at this point. You buy Odom, you better have the sun and the water too, or else you’ll probably be stuck at some point in the season, wondering aloud why exactly you signed this dude (ask Dallas). Beaches makes you think of L.A. and Miami. But New York is on the water too, and apparently, the Big Apple is Odom’s No. 1 landing spot.
A source close to the former Sixth Man of the Year told ESPNNewYork.com that the Knicks would be “on the top of his list.” But will he get that chance? He has a friendly contract – only one season left on his deal, and it’s only partially guaranteed – and any number of contenders probably believe he’s the final missing piece.
Even if they have to waive him before June 29, the Mavs will do it and eat the $2.4 million of guaranteed money that Odom is owed. If that happens, he becomes a free agent and could conceivably sign anywhere, including New York. Predictably, Dallas will try to trade him beforehand to get something in return. But without any leverage – everyone in the league knows the Mavs won’t keep him no matter what – it could be hard to find a suitable deal.
Odom isn’t considered a great defender and isn’t particularly physical or rugged, but he is a consistent rebounder and can help space the floor. He’d fit in particularly well with Tyson Chandler and Carmelo Anthony, with Chandler covering him at the rim and Odom’s perimeter game allowing ‘Melo more space on the block.
Odom would also give the Knicks another facilitator, something they need since so many of their best offensive players are black holes who can’t elevate the players around them.
Would the Knicks be a good fit?
Follow Sean on Twitter at @SEANesweeney.
Follow Dime on Twitter at @DimeMag.
Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE.