*Following a short stint with the Dallas Mavericks, longtime Los Angeles Lakers star Lamar Odom is headed back to the City of Angels, according to the Associated Press, but this time as part of his original team, the Los Angeles Clippers.
Also part of the deal, Clippers player Mo Williams will be reunited with the Utah Jazz, reports the AP, whose source spoke on condition of anonymity because a three-team deal between the Dallas Mavericks, Clippers and Jazz is contingent on Williams exercising his $8.5 million player option for next season. That person said that was expected to happen today.
Odom, married to TV personality Khloe Kardashian, spent the first four years of his NBA career with Clippers. Williams was drafted by the Jazz in 2003 and played 57 games as a rookie before going to Milwaukee, Cleveland and then the Clippers.
The Jazz are in position to absorb Williams’ salary without sending a player to Dallas by using a trade exception created last season when they dealt Mehmet Okur to New Jersey.
Dallas faced a Friday deadline on a $2.4 million buyout of Odom’s $8.2 million option for next season. Now the Mavericks instead will have an $8.2 million trade exception, similar to what they used to acquire Odom from the Los Angeles Lakers last December before the strike-shortened season.
Odom, drafted fourth overall by the Clippers in 1999, is coming off an underwhelming 50-game stint with Dallas that didn’t even take him through the entire season. He was the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year for the Lakers for the 2010-11 season.
The Mavericks on April 9 said Odom would be inactive for the rest of the season, when the then-defending NBA champions still had nine regular season games left and were making their push toward the playoffs. That move came two days after a heated halftime exchange during a game between Odom and Dallas owner Mark Cuban, who questioned the player’s commitment to the team.
Odom’s averages of 6.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 20.5 minutes in Dallas were career lows. The 32-year-old Odom has averaged 14.2 points and 8.6 rebounds in 879 career games.