Mar 21, 2012; Dallas, TX, USA; Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant (24) hugs former teammate Dallas Mavericks power forward Lamar Odom (7) after the game at the American Airlines Center. The Lakers defeated the Mavericks 109-93. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-US PRESSWIRE

Lamar Odom Returns To Add More Drama To Lakers-Clippers Rivalry

Who says you can’t go home again? Certainly not Lamar Odom who is headed back to L.A. via a four-team trade that does not involve the Los Angeles Lakers. Of course Odom wasn’t going to be able to re-join the Lake Show anyway thanks to the new rules of the CBA, at least not until December of 2012 he couldn’t have. But that’s all a moot point.

Still, it somehow seems fitting that Odom should return to where it all started for him as he’ll be  back in Staples sporting those red, white and blue colors of the Clippers. As if the suddenly serious rivalry between the Lakers and Clippers needed more drama, along comes Odom to deal the revenge card from the bottom of the deck.

While the Lakers were never going to be in the Odom market they did lose out on the Mo Williams sweepstakes. Many of us would have gladly welcomed Williams with open arms as the Lakers point guard replacing the exciting yet ultimately disappointing Ramon Sessions who is currently waiting for Saturday night to start exploring his options in free agency.

But acquiring Williams would have required a major move of some sort and as we know that’s just not allowed around the Laker organization these days.

Instead Williams will also be making an NBA homecoming as he’s off to Utah where his pro career began.

Now there wasn’t any real reason to think the Lakers were going to get into the mix to pursue Williams. We’ve been warned to lower our expectations given the part-time presence of Jim Buss and the desire to stay away from the luxury tax.

None the less the Lakers did have the financial means to acquire Williams with the all-too-ironic $8-million trade exception attained in the original Odom trade last season. How would that have been for a Hollywood storyline?

So let’s all prepare ourselves right now for the overblown spectacle that will be ESPN’s coverage of the first Lakers-Clippers game of the 2012-13 NBA season. I’m giving even odds on the first shot of the pregame being the obligatory Kobe Bryant-Lamar Odom midcourt greeting. I’ll go 5 to 1 that the halftime break will feature a close-up of Vanessa Bryant giving Khloe Kardashian an icy hug behind the bench.

Tags: Jim Buss Lamar Odom Los Angeles Clippers Los Angeles Lakers Mo Williams Ramon Sessions

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