Stein: Nets Nearly Acquired Lamar Odom in December

Interesting footnote that emerged from the Lamar Odom saga earlier this week in Dallas: Sources close to the situation say that Odom would likely have landed with the New Jersey Nets had the Los Angeles Lakers’ trade for Chris Paul gone through in December.

(cont.)Sources say that the Hornets, had they been able to trade Paul to the Lakers instead of the Clippers, were well aware that Odom would not be taking his exile from Lakerland well and thus had a trade lined up with New Jersey that would have sent Odom to Deron Williams’ Nets in exchange for a future first-round pick.

More: Marc Stein, — Weekend Dime, 3. Eastern Conference

Now, part of this depends on what first-round pick we’re talking — the Nets at that point owned the entirety of their own first-round pick, and still own Houston’s lottery-protected first-round pick from this year. But for a moment, imagine that the Nets trotted out (post-deadline) a lineup of D-Will, Brooks, Crash, Odom, and Lopez, with Humphries coming off the bench. Kardashian issues aside — and goodness, they’d be there — That’s a pretty formidable front five. (Of course, there’s another “five” the Nets could have had instead of Lopez, but I digress.)

Despite this pipe dream, it’s important to note that Odom left Dallas in disarray this year after a career-worst season mired in deep personal issues. Given the pointedness of media coverage in the New York area, coupled with the utter awkwardness of teaming up Lamar Odom and Kris Humphries, it’s difficult to imagine a scenario in which Odom fared any better in New Jersey.