More on Odom: not being traded after all?

By Jason Wojciechowski on June 21, 2008 at 8:12 PM

This OCR piece suggests that Lamar Odom won't be traded this offseason. I say "yea" to that.

It also floats the idea that Odom might be moved to the bench rather than being the starting small forward, so that he'd play with the second unit. Given how Phil Jackson uses his bench, this might not be a terrible idea, because he could still get Odom a lot of minutes (Odom's wasted if he's only play 20-25 minutes) and he could have him on the floor at the times when he needs him there, and he could even run a three-bigs lineup when he's comfortable with it, but could otherwise go with a rotating cast: of the Pau, Bynum, Odom group, there'd always be two on the floor, with Odom at PF, Bynum at C, and Pau switching between the two spots depending on whether he was playing with Bynum or Odom. And of course Odom could still be available to play SF or even SG (with Kobe moving to the SF spot) if Jackson wanted all three on the floor for matchups or because they were playing well or whatever other reason.

Throwing the group into training camp and seeing how it all works out sounds better to me than gambling on "I don't know if Odom will work" and trading him for an inferior player that's a more traditional small forward. This is especially true if Sasha Vujacic and Ronny Turiaf resign with the team, because then you've got the entire squad coming back: when you're talking about a young team that had a lot of success the year before, a major shake-up (which is what an Odom trade would be) might not be the best in terms of keeping them all playing on the same page together.