Lamar Odom Finally Signs with Lakers

Marcel SmithSenior Analyst IJuly 30, 2009

ORLANDO, FL - JUNE 14:  Lamar Odom #7 of the Los Angeles Lakers celebrates after defeating the Orlando Magic 99-86 in Game Five of the 2009 NBA Finals on June 14, 2009 at Amway Arena in Orlando, Florida.  NOTE TO USER:  User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

According to ESPN. com, the Los Angeles Lakers and forward Lamar Odom have finally agreed to a deal.  The deal is a four-year deal worth $33 million, with the fourth year being a team option.  Odom, a key part of the Lakers championship team this past season with his versatility, was seriously considering signing with the Miami Heat, one of his former teams for the full mid-level exception (about $6.8 million per year). 

This signing makes the Lakers the clear favorite to repeat, even with the Spurs, Celtics, Cavaliers and Magic all improving with offseason moves.  They now have Fisher, Kobe, Artest, Pau and Bynum as their starting five with Lamar Odom, Farmar, Sasha, Shannon Brown, Powell and Mbenga.

Also, the Lakers may still sign Sheldon Brown or Joe Smith with the veterans minimum to complete their bench.  Now, the last goal for the Lakers is to extend Kobe Bryant for as long as possible, which is now extremely likely as there isn't a team in the league with as much talent, or young talent, as the Lakers have. 

This signing shows that owner Jerry Buss is completely dedicated to winning as he signed Ron Artest to the full mid-level exception, Shannon Brown to the biannual exception and now Odom to a big contract, even though the Lakers were already over the cap before any of these signings. 

What do you guys think this move means for the rest of the league and for the Lakers?