Lamar Odom Returns to Dallas Mavericks After Temporary Reassignment


Lamar Odom is back in action on the Dallas Mavericks.

Despite being reassigned to Dallas' D-League (development league) on Friday while he took a week-long leave to tend to family matters, Khloe Kardashian's husband suited up to play with his original team Saturday, helping bring the Mavs to 102-96 victory over the Utah Jazz.

Calling himself "lucky" to play with the Mavs, Odom apologized to his teammates for missing work, and thanked owner Mark Cuban for sticking by him.

"It was really personal and it was something I had to tend to," Odom told ESPN after the game, referring to the reason why he left the team Feb. 22. "Mark Cuban is a great owner for understanding. Sometimes we have to fix whatever's going on off the court in order for us to fix what's going on on the court."

Called back to the Mavs at the 11th hour Saturday when center Brandan Wright bowed out of the game due to a concussion, Odom scored nine points in 18 minutes, had five rebounds and blocked three shots. He had been expected to play at least one game with Frisco, Tex.-based minor league team the Texas Legends before his callback, which Cuban told Us Weekly was a "rehab assignment."

Coach Rick Carlisle believes Odom is back in fighting form. "I don't think there's one minute or a stretch of 25 seconds tonight where anybody in that crowd could have said he's not into the game," the coach told reporters. "He was into it. But now that he's done it, he's got to do it again and again and again. He's got to do it 28 times before the playoffs, and he can do it. I'm fully convinced that he can do it."

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