Lamar Odom. biography
Lamar Joseph Odom was born on November 6, 1979, in the drug-infested neighbor of Jamaica, New York and turned to basketball while attending Christ The King Regional High School to escape a troubled childhood. He played on the USA Today All-USA 1st Team before being selected by the Los Angeles Clippers in the 1999 NBA Draft, following his freshman year at the University of Rhode Island. Lamar's first season record was so remarkable that he was crowned the 2000 NBA All-Rookie First Team.
In 2003, Lamar was traded to the Miami Heat for a season and then to the Los Angeles Lakers through a package deal for Shaquille O'Neal in 2004. In that same year, Lamar joined the US national team for the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, where he averaged 9.3 points per game and won a bronze medal. He quickly adapted to his new team and helped lead them to the 2006 playoffs by averaging 19 PPG.
Lamar was at the top of his game going into the 2006-2007 season, but the death of his seventh-month-old son Jayden along with a shoulder injury in 2006, derailed his career and caused him to sit out most of the 2007-2008 season. Due to the team's growing talent, Lamar transitioned into a sixth man position during the 2008-09 season, yet was able to secure an NBA championship.
In the 2009-10 season, free-agent Lamar was highly sought after by The Heat, but decided to stay in L.A. when fellow-New Yorker Ron Artest joined the team. He proved to be the ideal sixth man, with an average of 10 rebounds a game and another trip to the NBA Finals.
A year later, Lamar requested he be traded to another team after finding out about a proposed $8.9 million trade that would send him to the New Orleans Hornets, Chris Paul to the Lakers and fellow-teammate Pau Gasol to the Houston Rockets, despite NBA commissioner David Stern vetoing the deal. He was ultimately traded by the Lakers to the Dallas Mavericks in exchange for a first-round draft pick. Although a new start for Lamar, he was soon placed on the NBA D-League team, the Texas Legends, after missing three games for personal reasons. Unable to successfully click with his new team, Lamar ultimately left and returned to L.A. to play for the Clippers in June 2012.
Aside from basketball, Lamar is best known for marrying the reality super star Khloé Kardashian in September 2009, having their wedding broadcasted on the reality series Keeping Up with the Kardashians and landing their own spinoff series Khloé and Lamar, which premiered on April 10, 2011. He has also launched the music and film production company Rich Soil Entertainment and appeared in a Taco Bell commercial alongside Charles Barkley, as well as a cameo on the second season of HBO's series Entourage.