First there was a whisper, then quiet chants...and finally, screaming demands from Lakers fans to a member of their 2009 championship squad.
Lamar Odom has gotten Lakers fans blood boiling.
Remember him? He’s the guy that was brought from Miami in the Shaq trade to help Kobe and the Lakers win a championship.
He failed as a second option, folding under the pressure of playing behind Kobe Bryant. This memory is still fresh in the minds of Lakers fans.
No surprise here. Lakers fans are known to be arrogant, believing everyone who has the chance to play for their team should be overwhelmed with joy, taking any deal Jerry Buss offers them.
Ah, these damn fans. Why do they worship their Lakers so much?
It's not as if the Lakers have won 15 NBA championships.
It's not as if numerous hall of famers have worn the purple and gold.
Certainly they don't have the best player in the world and arguably the best big man in Pau Gasol on their team?
I am sure they don't have the best basketball coach in history (who has won 10 rings).
This isn't the Hollywood Lakers is it?
The Lakers are the best and most profitable basketball franchise today (sorry, Lamar Odom, you can't take any credit for this) and perhaps the most decorated and popular sports team in the world.
They let Shaquille O'Neal go when he asked for too much money, and did the same to Tyron Lue, Devin George, and recently Trevor Ariza when they asked for a raise. I'm afraid Lamar Odom’s greed may cause him to follow in the footsteps of these losers.
In the end, the Lakers are bigger than any one player, especially one who is third or fourth option (Artest will probably be the third) and asks for too much money.
Knowing that Lamar Odom did not respond to the Lakers' proposed offer of a three-year, $27 million contract, Lakers fans might change their cries: “Who cares if you leave?! We have Artest, Kobe, Pau and Phil!”
I doubt that Odom can get more money from anyone else, especially with most teams not able to acquire expensive free agents and cutting back because of the recession. When all is said and done, Odom might play elsewhere for the same money...or maybe even less.
Just like Devin George, Tyron Lue, and Trevor Ariza before him, Lamar Odom wouldn’t matter anymore. Instead, he would take the dreaded trip into the gloomy world of obscurity.
Enjoy the walk.