The Mavericks and Odom spent Easter Sunday working out a parting, according to sources close to the situation, that frees the struggling Odom to leave the team immediately without actually being released.
"The Mavericks and I have mutually agreed that it's in the best interest of both parties for me to step away from the team," Odom said in a statement to ESPN.com. "I'm sorry that things didn't work out better for both of us, but I wish the Mavs' organization, my teammates and Dallas fans nothing but continued success in the defense of their championship."
This was a long time coming as either side was just prolonging the inevitable. Odom’s struggles to find his niche with his new franchise left teammates and Dallas executives defending his presence.
Night in and out, when it seemed that Odom just was not going to cut it as a Maverick, teammates were addressing his slump as something that would pass, just a growing pain in a new organization. However, that slump has lasted pretty much the entire season and Dallas has finally realized that home is where the heart is, and his heart just isn’t in Texas.
A lot of fans thought that Odom’s arrival in Dallas would be a simple one. The ingredients were in place for him to have a standout season. After being one of the best reserve players in the league for the LA Lakers, he was mentioned in a trade for the coveted All-Star guard, Chris Paul.
Doing everything but demanding a trade from the franchise, Odom showed that not only did he not want to stay where he was not wanted, he was planning on making the Lakers regret ever considering him for a trade in the first place.
The joke has been on Odom lately as the Lakers have made moves to bring in a younger, quicker guard to propel the Lakers in contention and he has been trying to find the game that Dallas fans just knew he’d have.
The reports will probably begin to fly that the Lakers want a piece of Odom, but who knows. For anyone besidese the Lakers, Odom may be a gamble, because if he could not get it to go in Dallas, who’s to say he can anywhere else?