Mavericks' Lamar Odom Starting to Become a Distraction in Big D

Karthik TadisinaSenior Writer IMarch 26, 2012

Lamar Odom.
Lamar Odom.Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

There have been many interesting storylines taking place during the 2011-12 NBA season.

The storylines range from the emergence of Jeremy Lin, who showed the entire sports world that hard work and taking advantage of playing time can jump start one’s career, to the Orlando Magic’s decision to keep Dwight Howard in town for another year (if not longer) with the saga hours before the trade deadline.

One story that has been brewing since the start of the season is the puzzling and rather surprising play of veteran forward Lamar Odom of the Dallas Mavericks.

The Mavericks were able to acquire Odom from the Lakers for a 2012 first-round draft pick and a trade exception. The Mavericks, who are looking to preserve cap space this season, have a roster of seasoned veterans looking to defend the championship.

However, it appears that Odom has had a tough year where he has not been able to find his game. His ongoing struggles have hurt the team in terms of overall production, as they were expecting to see the Lamar Odom of the Lakers. Odom paired along with Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Terry was supposed to be a much feared lineup for opposing defenses.

Instead, Mavericks fans have seen a rather lethargic Odom who acts as if he does not want to be in Dallas and will want out at the end of the season.

It will be interesting to see how the whole Odom situation plays out, as the Mavericks need production from him. If the Mavericks decide not to trade Lamar even if he requests one, could he choose to retire?

With the Mavericks ready to make some noise this season, especially in the postseason, hopefully Odom turns things around and plays somewhat like his old self. The Mavericks are in need of his production to even have a chance at making some noise come playoff time.