ODOM RETURNS TO CLIPPERS
Eric Patten | 6/29/12


Press Release: Clippers Acquire Odom in Four-Team Trade
Lamar Odom is a Clipper once again.

The versatile forward will return to the team that made him their fourth overall draft pick in 1999 after the Clippers Friday agreed to send guard Mo Williams to the Jazz and the rights to 2012 second round selection (53rd overall) Furkan Aldemir to Houston as part of a four-team trade. The Dallas Mavericks will ship Odom to Los Angeles and will also send the draft rights of Shan Foster, the 51st pick in the 2008 Draft to the Jazz. Utah ships the draft rights of Tadija Dragicevic, the 53rd pick in the 2008 NBA Draft to Dallas, while the Mavs receive cash considerations from the Rockets.

The acquisition of Odom has been rumored for days, but was contingent on Williams, who scored 13.2 points off the bench for the Clippers last season, picking up the player option on the final year of his contract. Williams opted in Friday afternoon making the trade official.

"Lamar is a versatile and experienced player who has had a lot of success in this league," Clippers head coach Vinny Del Negro said. "It is no secret how talented he is and his ability to play multiple positions will add a new dimension to our team. Lamar has the understanding of what it takes to win in the NBA, and will be a veteran presence that makes us better."

In 13 seasons with the Clippers, Heat, Lakers and Mavericks, the 32-year-old Odom averaged 14.2 points, 8.6 rebounds, and 3.9 assists, while shooting 46.5% from the field. He was an integral member of two Lakers championship teams (2008-09 and 2009-10) and received 96 of 117 first-place votes en route to winning the 2010-11 Sixth Man of the Year Award.

Odom put up career-low numbers during his only season in Dallas last year, playing just 50 games and shooting 35.2% (nearly 8% worse than his previous low). However, there's reason to expect a bounce back in his return to the comfort of Los Angeles, where he played 11 seasons combined between the Clippers and Lakers. He was a devastating matchup for opponents his final season with the Lakers, often being relied upon as the primary ball-handler in tandem with Pau Gasol or Andrew Bynum in the frontcourt.

A native of Jamaica (Queens), New York, Odom, along with former Clipper and collegiate teammate Cuttino Mobley, led the University of Rhode Island to an unprecedented berth in the Elite 8. After one season with the Rams, the Clippers envisioned perhaps a left-handed version of Magic Johnson when the tabbed him as the No. 4 selection the draft.

However, his tenure with the Clippers was filled with highs and lows. As a 20-year-old rookie he finished third in Rookie of the Year balloting behind Elton Brand and Steve Francis and was a first-team All-Rookie selection. He followed up with an impressive sophomore campaign averaging 17.2 points and 7.7 rebounds for an up-and-coming Clippers' team, which went 15-13 to close the season.

But the young core of Odom, Darius Miles, Quentin Richardson, and Corey Maggette did not reach their perceived potential and after two injury-plagued seasons, Odom signed an offer sheet with Miami that the Clippers did not match.

In re-acquiring Odom, the Clippers lose Williams, who was brought in after the team traded Baron Davis and a first round pick to Cleveland for him in February 2011. After starting the final 22 games of the 2010-11 season, he was key member of last season's run to the second round of the playoffs as the top reserve guard behind Chris Paul and Chauncey Billups early on and Randy Foye after Billups sustained a season-ending Achilles tendon injury. He was a sparkplug, scoring in bunches and alternating between point guard and shooting guard. He scored 25 points or more in three consecutive games in January, made 7-of-9 three-pointers in a March win over San Antonio, and chipped in 19 points in just 23 minutes of the Clippers' Game 3 loss to the Spurs in the postseason.

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