Lamar Odom Announces He'll Play Basketball in China, Thanks Stephon Marbury

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJuly 26, 2018

Retired NBA basketball player Lamar Odom arrives at the Kids' Choice Sports Awards at UCLA's Pauley Pavilion on Thursday, July 13, 2017, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)
Richard Shotwell/Associated Press

Longtime NBA power forward Lamar Odom announced Thursday he's reached an agreement to play basketball in China.

Odom, who didn't confirm which Chinese team he'd be joining, named former New York Knicks point guard Stephon Marbury as his "inspiration" in the Instagram post.

"Thanks lord for giving me another chance in life and thank you fans for your the love and support during all those hard years," he wrote. "Never give up on yourself and keep believing that only god can create the miracles you're hoping for. Basketball and my children have always been the light in my life and this is where my focus is right now."

The 38-year-old New York City native hasn't played professional basketball since being hospitalized in October 2015 after using cocaine and a Viagra-like medication at a Las Vegas-area brothel. He was placed on life support before regaining full consciousness.

In July 2017, Odom wrote a piece for the Players' Tribune.

"I'm sober now. But it's an everyday struggle," he explained. "I have an addiction. I'll always have an addiction. It never goes away. I mean, I want to get high right now. But I know that I can't if I want to be here for my children."

One year later, he's set to resume his basketball career.

Odom, who last appeared in the NBA with the Los Angeles Clippers during the 2012-13 season, averaged 13.3 points, 8.4 rebounds and 3.7 assists across 961 NBA games.

His resume includes two championships during his time with the Los Angeles Lakers as well as being named the Sixth Man of the Year for the 2010-11 campaign.

Now he'll look to emulate Marbury, who enjoyed a late-career renaissance in China en route to three Chinese Basketball Association titles and six All-Star Game selections.