So often a public figure or celebrity’s fall from grace involves a pay by the hour motel, a pipe, and woman with a stage name. Millionaire athletes, politicians, and box office actors hit bottom somewhere between check and checkout at the Red Robin Inn off an exit of some interstate between the end of the road and demons hot on their trail.
I lived in Washington, D.C. when then mayor, Marion Barry, was found in a motel room with a lot explaining to do. I wasn’t saddened or surprised by the news. Barry was as seedy as he was charismatic – a man you would support, but wouldn’t vouch for. Former Dallas Cowboy receiver, Michael Irvin, starred in several news segments entering and leaving places long haul truck drivers wouldn’t be caught dead at. But he was the “Playmaker” for America’s team. That’s the ultimate pass as an empathetic figure as long as he scored touchdowns, won Super Bowl, and found Jesus.
The troubles of former Los Angeles Clipper, Lamar Odom, are different. He was a guy you rooted for and not because he was a winner, but because he wore his heart on his sleeves, loved his teammates, and often allowed himself to be raw for the public. Lamar also exhibited class and humility. He never truly made the transition from happy to be here to you should be happy to have me.
The aforementioned had hit the bottom and it was only a matter of time when the feel good chapter would be hot off the press. But that’s not the case with Odom. It feels like Odom is beyond the cry for help and has all but checked out for good. Odom’s latest arrest is evidence that the worst is yet to come. The young man won’t stop until he’s no longer in pain. Basketball has proven to be a false antidote and reports state that he’s turned his back on family.
The Clippers have a family of their own, and the league will continue to draft talented big men with a world of promise. The most we can all hope for is that Odom can retire in person, as a Clipper, and a happy man.
ChristohpherBrown is an NBA writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @whatrockschris. Like Him on Facebook.