He seems to think so, according to a source.
Odom played last year for The Dallas Mavericks, which did not turn out well. He asked for a trade out of L.A. after hearing that he was involved in the nullified Chris Paul to the Lakers trade. Dallas got him for pretty much nothing, and ironically that’s about all he brought to the team. He averaged career lows in scoring (6.6 ppg) and rebounding (4.1 rpg).
That is Lamar Odom at his worst. But, what could he bring at his best?
With the Lakers, Odom won two championships, and the sixth man of the year award in 2011. That season he averaged 14.4 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 3.0 assists. Those are numbers I can absolutely get on board with.
Due to his overall disappointing performance with the Mavs, they chose to put him on their inactive list for the last 9 games of the season. Ideally they would trade him before June 29th, in order to avoid having to pay him the portion of his salary that is guaranteed. If they fail to trade him then they will almost certainly release him, which would allow Odom to choose his future team.
Odom reportedly puts New York at the top of his list. He grew up in Queens, New York, and according to the source, “New York is somewhere he can be comfortable.”
But. Can the Knicks afford him?
Odom has a significant pay cut coming his way due to his poor performance last season. He is positioned to make 8.2 million, but if released he could sign for the mid level, mini mid level, or even the veterans minimum.
I doubt he would take the minimum, because he would desire a longer deal than a one year contract. If we operate using the logic that the arbitrator dealing with the case about Bird rights transferring even when a player is released rules in favor of the players, then Jeremy Lin and Steve Novak will be able to sign without using either of our exceptions. This would allow for the Knicks to have some options.
If the Knicks fail to resign J.R. Smith, who has displayed mixed signals about whether he will stay or go, then Odom would be the best sixth man on the market. He can rebound, shoot three pointers, and most importantly create his own shot.
The Knicks offense fails to execute when they can only rely on the skills of Carmelo Anthony. With Odom, we would be able to have Jeremy Lin, Amar’e Stoudemire, and Lamar Odom as our secondary scorers.
Odom is a low risk, high reward idea that may prove to be the missing piece in the Knicks Offense. By all means, if your reading this, Glen Grunwald, you have my blessing.