DALLAS -- The only explanation Charles Barkley can come up with for Lamar Odom’s disgraceful stint in Dallas is that the 13-year veteran never got over his divorce with the Lakers. But it disgusts Barkley that the Mavericks are on the hook for alimony after annulling their marriage to Odom.
“I always pull for the players, but the fact that they’ve got to pay him I think is a joke,” Barkley said during his Wednesday appearance on ESPN Dallas 103.3’s Galloway & Co. “I mean, because he didn’t earn his salary. He didn’t earn it at all.
“I like Lamar as a person, but I’m disappointed about everything that happened in Dallas. And it’s a shame that the Mavs got to pay him, to be honest with you, because he doesn’t deserve to get paid for what he put out there this year. He doesn’t deserve it, plain and simple.”
The Mavs finally had enough of Odom’s sulking, sorry effort and habitual tardiness and banished him from the team Sunday, less than 24 hours after a heated halftime confrontation where owner Mark Cuban questioning Odom’s commitment.
Odom presumably will return to Los Angeles to cash Cuban’s checks. Odom, who averaged career lows by far in almost every category and still whined behind the scenes about not getting enough playing time, will make almost $1 million the rest of the season and is due a $2.4 million buyout payment in June.
“To sit at home and make that kind of money really pisses me off, to be honest with you, for the effort that he put out there,” Barkley said. “He’s going to make hundreds of thousands of dollars these next two paychecks. ... That’s not fair to the Mavs. It’s not fair to the game of basketball.
“I’m just disappointed in Lamar.”