Depression Could Be A Career-Killer For Lamar Odom

By Richard Nurse
Lamar Odom
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

By all accounts, Lamar Odom is one of the nicest, most lovable players in the world until about a week ago, when his life became more TMZ than his family, the Kardashians. That’s around the time people began to look at him as pathetic, whether warranted or not.

According to the initial reports, Odom was kicked out of his house, holed up in a hotel and living his life on a drug binge. Sites even had him missing for three days, and the mainstream media took it and ran with it.

“Lamar is not missing,” Odom’s agent Jeff Schwartz told ESPN. “His wife [Khloe Kardashian] knows exactly where he is.”

Stories of his problems were nothing more than allegations. But that all changed Friday when his DUI arrest made the end of his career seem more real. It was something concrete; not just idle speculation from a not-so-reputable website.

If you believe what they say, Odom’s addiction began when he was dealt to the Dallas Mavericks in 2011, which was a summer where he found himself back in New York for his cousin’s funeral, but ended up being the cause of another.

Unfortunately for everyone involved, the car that Odom was driving in got into an accident with a motorcyclist and resulted in the death of a 15-year-old. And before you say that the event couldn’t make depression creep in, you have to remember who we are talking about.

This is the same guy who called Stephen A. Smith’s radio show to cry over rumors that he was being traded to the New Orleans Pelicans. He was so devastated that he still asked to be traded after the deal fell through.

So maybe the alleged drugs were a coping mechanism like Smith insinuated Odom’s marijuana use was in the early 2000’s. He hinted on First Take that LO might’ve used it to deal with the stress of his real life issues — like losing his mother at 12 and not seeing his father due to a heroin habit.

I must admit this is a story that I never wanted to write, especially since Odom has been one of my favorite players since he stepped into the league in 1999.

I mean, depression is quite drug in itself — couple that with his sensitivity and all of the trials and tribulations that he had to face at an early age, and it’s not hard to see why Odom’s life is very much still a work in progress.

This is not an excuse and it’s not acceptable. However, it’s pretty explainable. Let’s just hope that he can get his life together, then maybe his career as well.

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Richard Nurse is a Miami Heat columnist for Follow him on Twitter @blackirishpr or add him to your network on Google.


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