Blindsided By Chris Paul Trade, Lakers Legend Reveals Bitter Feelings Ahead of Life-Changing Request

Published 12/09/2023, 8:00 AM EST

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The failed 2011 three-team trade involving Chris Paul and the Los Angeles Lakers remains a real head-scratcher. The deal had a myriad of possibilities that could have unfolded. However, it fell apart at the last moment when the league vetoed the trade. However, it had already caused the damage. Lamar Odom, who was supposed to be part of the deal, recently revealed his emotions during those agonizing days.

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Odom was an essential part of the franchise but there was indeed a sense of awkwardness and disappointment with broken ties after the trade fell through.

Lamar Odom’s advice to the young players

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The 2x NBA champion was understandably miffed when he found that he was part of a three-team trade involving Chris Paul. Although the deal was later nixed, he was disheartened by the unexpected decision. Speaking of the unpredictable nature of the sports business, he said, “This for all the younger athletes you can never let your personal relationship with the organization involve you and your business with the organization because at any given time that S*** can happen. That can change. They won’t blink in a second.”

When asked about being blindsided by the franchise, Odom said, “I forgot I think I wanted to be traded after that. I was like, ‘yeah trade me.'” Odom played a pivotal role in the Lakers’ back-to-back championships in 2009 and 2010. Similarly to how it was for the players, the decision altered the team dynamics as well.

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Following the vetoed trade, the franchise also underwent a shift. It was more like rearranging the deck chairs on a sinking ship. Along with Odom, Pau Gasol, another crucial component of the team, was also traded. 

Following Gasol’s Hall of Fame induction, the man behind the trade, then Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak told SK, “Both Lamar and Pau were brought back to the Lakers. I’m sure, in their minds, it was bad enough that they had been traded. But now to come back, it was very difficult.” He added, “Much more so for Lamar.”

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Lamar Odom’s connection with LA

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The 2x NBA champion devoted half of his 14-year NBA career to the Lakers. After winning two championships, he won the Sixth Man of the Year award in 2010-11, making him the first Laker in history to win it. Understandably, he forged a deep connection with both the players and the city.

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Since he played for the Clippers for 5 years as well, the prospect of leaving LA was not just upsetting but also a bit like stepping into the unknown. The decision was not only emotionally challenging but perhaps even a tad daunting as well. But returning to the team also didn’t work out for him.

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His former teammate, Kobe Bryant had also expressed his disappointment and frustration with Odom’s departure. Shortly thereafter, he was traded to the Dallas Mavericks. Did you know about this? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Written by:

Pritha Debroy

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My love for basketball kicked off with the Portland Trail Blazers. The team's spirit, their thrilling plays, and the dedicated fan base had me hooked from the get-go. Now, I'm all about blending my passion for the game with my love for writing.
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Edited by:

Pragya Vashisth

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