Lamar Odom Will Forgo D-League, Return To Mavericks Saturday

With Dallas dropping their last four games without the mercurial power forward, the team is speeding up his return. He is reportedly expected to suit up Saturday night against Utah.

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Lamar Odom Update: Mavericks Cancel Odom's D-League Appearance

According to ESPN's Marc Stein, the Dallas Mavericks have canceled Lamar Odom's D-League appearance because they need him on the court for tonight's matchup against the Utah Jazz.

Odom was originally scheduled to play in a game for the Frisco Legends, the team's D-League affiliate, after he missed the last four games for undisclosed personal reasons.

However, it appears the Mavericks recent struggles have prompted the team to push ahead the 6'10 forward's timetable and spare the reality TV star the embarrassment of a game with the Legends.

Odom is expected to play for Dallas Saturday night against the Utah Jazz and the team will have to hope he can step right into the flow of the offense.

For the latest news and notes on the Mavericks, head over to Mavs Moneyball.

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Lamar Odom Update: Odom To Play In One D-League Game Before Return To Mavericks

According to ESPN's Marc Stein, Lamar Odom will be playing in one NBDL game on Saturday before he returns to the Dallas Mavericks:

Odom was away from the team for a weekend due to undisclosed "personal problems" and, under NBA rules agreed to in the new CBA, cannot refuse a one-game assignment to the D-League.

He has only averaged 7.7 points per game, by far a career low, so far this season and his appearance with the Mavericks' D-League affiliate on Saturday could be the beginning of the end to his last year in the NBA.

His repeated off-the-court issues, first demanding a trade from the Lakers and now this mysterious walk-out from the Mavericks, will not help matters.

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Lamar Odom Met With Mark Cuban Wednesday, Expected Back Soon

After a mysterious week-long absence from the team for what is being described only as "personal matters", Lamar Odom is expected to return to the Dallas Mavericks at some point in the next few days.

According to a report from ESPN's Marc Stein, Odom and his agent met with Dallas owner Marc Cuban on Wednesday before the team's 96-85 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies to discuss a timetable for his eventual return.

While the issue has been widely discussed and gossiped about in the NBA blogosphere, the Mavericks have given no indication that they are anything but fully supportive of Odom, signaling that they are ready to welcome him with open arms when he is able to return to the court.

The Sixth Man of the Year in 2011, Odom has under-performed since Dallas acquired him from the LA Lakers with a 2012 first round pick and the trade exception created by signing-and-trading Tyson Chandler to the New York Knicks.

Odom is averaging only 7.7 points and 4.5 rebounds on 35% shooting, but a big part of his struggles come from the on-court transition from playing as a face-up power forward with LA to having to move to the small forward position with Dirk Nowitzki firmly entrenched at the 4.

Without Odom in the line-up, Dallas has gone 0-3, as their bench, which is also missing key spark-plug Delonte West, isn't nearly as dangerous offensively when they have to play Brian Cardinal or Yi Jianlian at the 4 or move Shawn Marion or Brandan Wright out of position when Dirk is off the floor.

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Lamar Odom Update: Mavericks Forward Not With Team For 'Personal Reasons', Return Date Unknown

The organization has refused to go into detail as to why Odom is away from the team while insisting that they have no interest in buying out the enigmatic power forward.

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