Today at noon Lamar Odom has been presented as new player of Laboral Kutxa and this has caused a big expectancy. Many journalists have attended this presentation to listen the first words of the NBA star. The sports director, Felix Fernandez has explained that Lamar has signed for two months and that he will be wearing number 7.
Afterwards, Lamar took the stage and became the spotlight. Through the first questions he got through clearing out the main reasons why he has chosen Vitoria. “I am here to play basketball, to start a new life because this is the most important thing for me now”, this has been the way he started answering the questions. “Generally, I haven’t had any problem but some people thought that I had lost my perspective but I am here to fall in love again with basketball and there is not any better place than Baskonia, here in Vitoria”.
He also was asked about what he knows about the club, what he has been told about the team and the city. “I’ve been told that there is a big tradition here and I come from a place where basketball is kind of a religion and I wanted to continue with that. I’m really looking forward playing with my teammates”.
He has said that both personally and physically feels “good and even better day to day. I am still working to get a better conditioning because I have not played for a long time. We have to be patient but I’ll try to be ready for Sergio and the team when needed.
As a basketball star he has played for very important teams through very important cities. He has arrived in Vitoria from Los Angeles and this is a really evident change but for him there is something more important. “I was talking to a childhood friend and I was telling him that I remember having played in Nantes when I was 16. I am from New York, I was the number one at high school, I played for the rings, I played with Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol, and I was trained by Phil Jackson. There is a moment in life when less is more and you need to simplify things and I think that Vitoria is the perfect place for me to simplify my life and ask myself about Lamar Odom”.
The player has also explained what he thinks he could provide to the team. “I can play the role of a leader. There in not any unknown situation for me in basketball. I’ve won everything. I’ll try to transmit my teammates all my knowledge through my stay here.
Journalists have also been interested in how he got in contact with the club to finally close the deal and arrive in Vitoria. Odom has explained it clearly “I talked to my agent and he told me about this offer. I got in contact with Pau and everything has gone very quickly. Pau has a really good relationship with Sergio Scariolo and told me it would be a good choice. In 48 hours time I am here, everything has gone really quickly.
His words create optimism and he defines himself as a hard working and clear minded person. “Wherever you are or whatever your situation is you have to believe in yourself. It is necessary to be humble regardless of your situation in life, this is something very important, something everybody should take into account.”
He was asked about some former Baskonia players which are now succeeding in the NBA. Smiling, he said “Luis Scola and Tiago Splitter go really hard on the court and I’m a bit tired after having played so many times against them, for me, it’s not a priority to go back to where they are right now. Basketball has allowed me to travel all over the world and I remember that I used to play even when it was snowing or raining, and without being paid, it was only because I loved this game. I have lost that passion and this is why I am here.”