Lakers’ Solution To Rebuilding: Bring Back Odom & Ariza?

Lakers’ Solution To Rebuilding: Bring Back Odom & Ariza?


Mike Bresnahan of the L.A. Times recently made an interesting suggestion when presenting five possible rebuilding blocks for the Lakers.

His fifth and final option was to bring back Trevor Ariza and Lamar Odom, and here’s how he broke it down:

Send a future second-round pick and the $8.9-million traded player exception to New Orleans for forward Trevor Ariza; sign Odom for the veteran’s minimum of about $1.4 million.

He went on to say that the Hornets are in cash-saving mode, and they might actually go for the deal in order to save some money. As for Odom, who will likely be bought out by the Dallas Mavericks next month for $2.4 million, he may get more lucrative offers, but everyone knows L.O. wants to be in Los Angeles.

Personally, I think this scenario might be one of the Lakers’ best options, and here’s why:

First of all, the Lakers attempted to make a blockbuster trade (that trade for Chris Paul which would have sent Lamar Odom and Pau Gasol packing). We all know how that turned out. Then, the Lakers were in the running for Dwight Howard all season, which didn’t work out either. We must face that fact that any blockbuster deal (either for Dwight Howard or Deron Williams) is simply not going to happen. Additionally, I personally like their starting five, and feel that a few significant upgrades off the bench would drastically change the Lakers’ dynamic and once again put them amongst the serious title contenders.

Lamar Odom

Let’s start with Lamar Odom. Odom has proven himself to be a valuable starter and/or bench player…with the Lakers. He may have had a horrible season in Dallas, but he knows how to play with and off of Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, and Andrew Bynum. When the Lakers featured a front-line rotation of Odom, Gasol, and Bynum, teams simply didn’t know what to do defensively.

Additionally, Odom was usually seen in crunch time for his defense on virtually any position that was asked of him to guard. On offense, when Bynum would sit out, Odom was the one who delivered the ball in the post to Gasol for him to work. The two had an incredible offensive chemistry that allowed Bryant to sit out for a couple extra minutes as well.

Similarly, Odom’s play-making ability was a difference-maker for the Lakers as he is able to create shots for himself as well as others; something that was sorely missed in the 2012 season. Not to mention that Odom was considered the “glue guy” in the locker room and kept everybody loose. On a team that has had immaturity issues (Bynum) and various rifts (Bryant and Gasol’s chemistry) in recent memory, a little dose of L.O. may be just what the Lakers need–on the court and off. Odom’s overall versatility was severely missed this past season, so why not attempt to bring him back?

Obviously, there is some discord between Odom and Lakers’ management. The Lakers’ front office would have to reach out first in an attempt to bury the hatchet. Deep down inside, Odom wants to be a Laker. We can only hope that the Lakers want him back, and that he’ll take a big pay cut to rejoin his mates.

Trevor Ariza

Now, let’s move on to Trevor Ariza. If you ask Lakers fans about Trevor Ariza, most will have nothing but great things to say about him. He was beloved here in L.A. for the 137 games he donned Lakers’ purple and gold (including playoffs). Unfortunately, the Lakers couldn’t keep him after the 2009 season, and virtually swapped him for Ron Artest–now Metta World Peace. Metta worked out in 2010, wasn’t quite himself in 2011, and came on late in 2012. Either way, World Peace still has a defensive presence and can be effective.

As for Ariza, he would be replacing Matt Barnes if the Lakers don’t decide to retain his services. Barnes was a scrappy defensive player with a lot of hustle on both ends of the floor. However, injuries seemed to slow him in both playoff runs as a Laker. Ariza, in my opinion, is a better, more athletic defender, and a much better shooter as well. Although Ariza’s shooting hasn’t been that great over his career, he shot an outstanding 47% from three-point range in the 2009 playoffs with the Lakers. Not to mention all the clutch steals and blocks he had as well.

The Lakers sorely need an athletic wing player to keep up with multiple positions from point guards, shooting guards, and small forwards. Ariza is capable of guarding each of these, and is one of the top defenders in the league. I personally even thought he outplayed Kobe Bryant offensively and defensively when they faced each other in the 2011 playoffs. Anyways, the Lakers need a solid defender who can also shoot.

They have seemingly had to choose between those two qualities in players over the past couple years, and it always ended with the defensive player getting the playing time–and rightfully so (think Metta World Peace and Matt Barnes getting the nod ahead of, say, Jason Kapono). It would be a nice addition if they could find a player with both qualities.

Ariza played extremely well alongside Bryant, Odom, Gasol, and Bynum when he was here and the Lakers had one of the top offenses in 2009; with Ariza being a big part of that. Although he will no longer be slashing to the basket in the triangle offense like before, Ariza is a player that can play off of other players and find ways to create offense for himself. The offense just seemed to run a lot smoother with Ariza in the lineup, and has looked suspect over the last two seasons, so why not try to bring some of that fluid offense back?

It may be a long shot, but if the Lakers can somehow pull of a move for Ariza and get Odom to return as well, it might be just what the Lakers need.

Next Page:How It Would Work

  • Juantovar

    Let blake go and Give the back up PG spot to goudelock he’s gonna be working on his handling but if he gets minutes he could easily put up 12 a game off the bench

  • Sti1lmatic

    Lamar Odom is not the answer and the same goes to say about Ariza. MWP can defend better than Ariza. Odom only shows up for 25 out of 82 games.

  • Lana

    If I had to choose between the two, I would choose Trevor.

  • ArealisticLALfan

     You guys are the most idiotic Laker fans I’ve
    ever seen around here. To those who think that bringing back Odom and
    Ariza would solve the backcourt problems, it won’t! We need to get
    younger, faster, and stronger to compete with these young bastards (I.E.
    Thunder), not bring back players we knew from the good old Laker days!
    Look, we just have to trust Lakers’ front office to see what they can
    do for this team and Kupchak KNEW that once we got destroyed this past
    Monday’s game 5 against the Thunder, he knew that in order to compete
    with younger teams, the Lakers would have to get younger too. Dr. Buss
    should know by now, and well, so does the Buss family!My
    solutions for the Lakers should they get first picks from the drafts
    next year, they should hold on to them; not trade them away! It’s pretty
    much the only way we can compete in this league and we should watch
    these new young players grow. Again, let’s just see what the management
    can do this summer to make this team better

    • woop

      Very true. The Lakers do need to get faster and younger in order to compete with other teams. Fortunately for them that leaves Steve, Gasol, and Metta. Steve can be waived, Metta can be amnestied, and Gasol can be traded. Ariza is a younger, more accurate shooter than Metta so that’s an upgrade and Odom could just be there as a “safety” just in case we don’t get a decent PF over the summer. Just hope we get developed guys who can revolve around the core of Kobe and Bynum. Lakers should keep their first draft picks though, I agree with that. 

      • ArealisticLALfan

         About time someone other than you agree. I’ve been saying this since the beginning of the bloody season!

  • Lakerfantic

    I found trades and other moves that can make us the best instantly. The trades I found will specifically make us more athletic, shooters, and will still give us quality big men. With the trade exceptions that we have, we have a combined $10,298,629 to get some good players with without sacrificing some players yet. My first trades address our major weakness, our bench.

    Move 1- Sign Shannon Brown to 3.5 million dollars using the combined trade exception.
    Reason- This would makes us ten times more athleticism youth and will give us a great bench player, but he can be our new starting point guard. Brown can keep up with anyone in this league, Brown has the ability to move his feet so he can guard men like Westbrook or Chris Paul. Brown as our starting point guard would give us a huge advantage.

    Move 2- Sign Michael Beasely to a $6 million dollar deal using the rest of the trade exception.
    Reason- Beasely would give us a ton of scoring off the bench. Beasely will also assure us that everynight he would come to play, even if it meant defense, offense, rebounding, or passing. Beasely is a young Kevin Durant type player(6ft 10 inches ,scorer, versitile, potential)
    that has not gotten to his prime yet. If we get him, we can see him at his best.

    Move 3- Trade Blake, McRoberts, Barnes, and  $500,000 cash considerations for Lamar Odom and a draft pick 
    Reason- This trade brings back a versatile, scoring, passing, ball handling, and rebounding threat. Part of the reason he had a disappointing season was that he was hurt and mentally broken. If we trade back for him we can get our best bench player back. It would also make our bench the best in the NBA and it would restore a friendship between him, Laker Fans, Players, Front Office,  the ball boy, everyone. This would give Dallas a shooter in Blake, a athletic freak in McRoberts and a worker in Barnes. This works for both parties.

    Move 4- Resign Jordan Hill, Devin Ebanks, Darius Morris, and  Ramon Sessions
    Reason- It is clearly evident that these guys are the future big time players for this team. They currently make our team better, and give us, the fans, hope.

    Move 5- Trade Gasol, Eyenga, Murphy, for Zach Randolph and OJ Mayo
    Reason- This will give Andrew Bynum a sidekick who play wholeheartedly everyday. Zach Randolph is a tougher version of Gasol to me.
    OJ Mayo will bring our team a really good option off the bench and could be sixth man of the year. He can also handle the ball if needed.
    This trade also puts him in a good place. It reunites him with his brother Marc and can make one of the best big man duos in the NBA.
    Move 6- Draft a Shot blocking, athletic center
    Reason- We need a extra big body when players are tired.
    Move 7- Demote Mike Brown to a assistant coach and Hire Brian Shaw as the Head Coach.
    Reason- This gives us one of the best coaching staffs in the NBA. Brown would really emphasize and help our team defense and Brian Shaw would run the best offensive playbook plays again, THE TRIANGLE OFFENSE. Bian Shaw this time will teach it in an easier way though.

    Starting five:
    pg Shannon Brown
    sg Kobe Bryant
    sf Metta World Peace
    pf Zach Randolph 
    C Andrew Bynum

    Bench : 
    2nd unit
    pg Ramon Sessions
    sg OJ Mayo
    sf Michael Beasely
    pf Lamar Odom
    c Jordan Hill
    3rd unit
    pg Darius Morris
    sg Andrew Goudelock
    sf Devin Ebanks
    pf/c  Draft Pick
    Coaches:  Head Coach-Brian Shaw
    Assitant Coaches: Mike Brown, Quin Snyder, Chuck Person, Ettore Messina

    These moves and trades that I thought of revives our bench and makes our starting five better as well.These trades and moves  gets us more versatile players as well. The change in the coaching staff betters our stagnant offense and betters our defense. Because of these trades, we have the best bench in the nba no doubt and we have a sense of urgency to win. This has been missing for our last two seasons

    Lake Show baby

    • inthepost

      Unfortunately Murphy and Barnes aren’t on the team as of now. The Lakers would need to resign them in order to trade them. 

    • shockjay

      Great thoughts but one thing to consider is that the trade exception cannot be broken up.


    No way in bringing LO and Ariza back. Lamar looks like he’s slipped back into his immaturity. They all we need another year of LO playing good one game and poorly for the next few. Ariza fit in with the triangle but now I’m not sure he has the tools to play at SG. He too is not a great outside shooter.

  • Jc4moi

    We’re married to Brown for one more year—would love Ariza, but #1 need has to be OUTSIDE SHOOTING

  • Edward Moradian

    I do agree with some of the comments made about LO. He was constantly criticized as being inconsistent throughout his Laker career. Keep in mind that one of those years, he won sixth man of the year. It looked as if he would only get better, until the mishap trade. Lakers lost LO this last season and it showed big time. There was a whole the entire season in the Lakers roster that never disappeared.

  • Matal86

    Have we forgotten how much Sasha Vujacic sucked balls… C’mon guys get your heads out of your asses… 

  • Pmortega7

    I like this idea of getting L.O. and Ariza back. I would also resign Sessions and trade Blake and Gasol to the Nets for D Williams. If we can’t get D Williams or Rondo, then I think we should sign Steve Nash for 1 year to add depth, shooting ability, leadership, and defense to our starting line up.

  • Kyubee Brian

    Fire Brown. He’s not worth to be a lakers coach. nobody understands his system. give brian shaw instead because he fits well and everybody knows and understands him. trade bynum, gasul, barney, murphy, hill, sessions. get dwight coward and iguoala koala. bring odong and ariza back

    • Prime76

      Man one word i have to say to your comment we had no preseason.

  • Archie Suma

    this really a great move of us’.. can the lakers money do this?..

  • Crystal

    Lakers shouldn’t have let Ariza go to begin with.