Blog Entry

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

Posted on: May 18, 2010 6:26 pm
EL SEGUNDO, Calif. – Amar’e Stoudemire wasn’t able to come up with anything on the court to stop Lamar Odom from having a dominant 19-point, 19-rebound performance in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals. So on Tuesday, he came up with an excuse.

“I’m not giving him no hype,” Stoudemire told reporters before the Suns practiced at Staples Center. “He had a lucky game.”

Among other things, Stoudemire is known for his quotability. In a “Twitterview” with NBA media this week, I asked him how far Cleveland would’ve gone if he’d been traded there instead of Antawn Jamison. True to form, Amar’e came through with a one-word answer: “Championship.”

Beautifully done. He may or may not be right about that. But when it comes to Odom, he’s dead wrong.

And foolish for saying it.

As exhibited in the Lakers’ 128-107 victory in Game 1 Monday night, Kobe Bryant is going to get his numbers in this series. With 40 points – 35 of them by the end of the third quarter – Bryant enjoyed his sixth straight 30-point playoff performance. He seemed to relish the Suns’ strategy of trying defending him with 37-year-old Grant Hill. Bryant called that challenge “enjoyable,” and by that, he meant, “Get this old man away from me before I embarrass him.”

Whether it’s Hill or Jason Richardson or Jared Dudley, the Suns have no one who can check Bryant with any semblance of success. For that reason alone, this is going to be a long series for the Suns – or a short one, depending on how you look at it.

But to a man – including Stoudemire – the Suns have insisted that the key to challenging the Lakers is preventing Bryant’s supporting cast from hurting them. This did not go well in Game 1, with Odom’s monstrous game leading a 44-35 scoring advantage by the Lakers’ suspect bench over the Suns’ reserves, who were supposed to have been a key strength going into the series.

“[Bryant] is gonna score,” Stoudemire said after the game. “That’s one thing he’s gonna do. We know that, so we’ve got to make sure we try to contain him a little bit more. But we’ve got to close out the other guys. We’ve got to do a better job on their role players.”

The two sources of consistent production for the Lakers during their title defense have been Bryant and Pau Gasol. Andrew Bynum has been in and out of the box score. Derek Fisher has made some big shots and has held up better than anyone anticipated against three prolific point guards – Russell Westbrook, Deron Williams and now Steve Nash.

But during their run of postseason success in the past five years, Odom’s performance has been a tipping point for the Lakers. When he plays well, the Lakers usually win. When he plays like he did Monday night, the Lakers almost never lose.

With the possible exceptions of Bryant and LeBron James, Odom is as physically gifted as any player who’s come into the league over the past dozen years. It’s often a question of motivation, but there’s no doubting his talent.

“I’ve played with Lamar for a long time, so I wasn’t impressed,” said Ron Artest, who grew up playing with Odom on the playgrounds of Queens, N.Y. and in AAU ball. “I’ve seen him do that all the time.”

So why any opposing player would want to ignite the one area of Odom’s game that is lacking – his motivation – is beyond me. Stoudemire should know better than to rattle Odom’s cage, and he should know better than to say his performance Monday night was an aberration.

The Lakers are 9-2 this season when Odom has 15 or more rebounds, including a 17-point, 19-rebound game against Houston in January and a 10-point, 22-rebound effort against Portland in February – both wins. In his postseason career with the Lakers since the 2005-06 season, the Lakers are 7-2 when Odom has 15 or more rebounds. Four of those nine games have come against the Suns, and Odom scored in double figures in all four, as well. In those games, the Lakers are 2-2.

But even if Stoudemire forgot about those games, surely over the past five years he’s noticed at least a handful of Odom’s 47 games with 15-plus rebounds since he put on a Lakers uniform. If not, maybe he’s seen highlights of one or two of his 174 double-doubles as a Laker. During the same five-year period, Stoudemire has 28 games with 15-plus rebounds and 156 double-doubles. How many of those were luck?

After throttling Stoudemire and the Suns’ supposedly improved defense in Game 1, Odom wouldn’t engage him in a war of words Tuesday.

“I’m not gonna do that,” Odom said. “Not when it comes to basketball.”

As for his performance, Odom said, “It was good. Could be better. Hopefully I can have another lucky one.”

Since: Apr 23, 2008
Posted on: May 19, 2010 10:27 am

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

Your an idiot, only about 3 of the guys you mentioned are more talented then Odom. Yeah he may not bring it every night but he has more physical tools then 90% of the guys in the nba. He is nightmare matchup for any 4 in the league, he can shoot, dribble drive and he is an awesome passer. So shut up unless you know what your talking about, and you DON'T.

Since: Mar 4, 2008
Posted on: May 19, 2010 9:43 am

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

Iverson?  Not that you said one thing that was true, but that inclusion is a bonus multiplier of stupidity.  Sounds like a bitter Nuggets fan to me.

Since: Dec 29, 2007
Posted on: May 19, 2010 7:46 am

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

Stoudemire know what he is saying though. He felt Odom was hot for just one game so by making a comment like this he is pressuring Odom on having a repeat performance which Stoudemire think he can stop this time around. Not only that, but it is kinda a way to get the ball out of Kobe hands and into Odom's. I don't think Odom can repeat that performance, but the Lakers would still be happy if he contributed his usual 11 points and and 10 rebounds throughout the series.

Since: Mar 29, 2010
Posted on: May 19, 2010 7:19 am

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

While Stoudemire may have better stats the Odom, it’s mainly due the fact he starts and Odom doesn’t.  They play two different roles on their teams.  He’s asked to be a dominant scorer and rebounder,  Odom is ask to provide a spark off the bench for his team and spell the often injured center.  I think you could supplant Odom with the Suns and he would put up the same type of stats if not better than Stoudemire.  But Stoudemire could not fill that same role for LA if asked; he is to much a product on Nash….not that he not talented, just not as versatile as Odom at all!  Instead of calling him lucky should focus on pulling down some boards himself in a big game you only come up with 3 or 4 rebounds is just sad for his talent level and minutes he played.   Just shut up and play a better game next time……..stop hating on the man for showing up when you didn’t.


BTW not a Laker fan….just stating my opinion.

Since: Sep 19, 2006
Posted on: May 19, 2010 3:13 am

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

If Odom comes alive the rest of this series and if the Suns lose, I think this may have bought Stoudamire his ticket outta town. Who knows, maybe he had already decided to leave, but as much as I love Stoudamire the player, this was just a bone-headed thing to say. Not even Shaq ever said anything nearly as dumb.

Since: Jul 23, 2008
Posted on: May 19, 2010 1:23 am

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

Stat has been trying hard all season to show he can be a leader and it's clear, much like Kobe, that he is little more than a stat man.

Since: Jan 17, 2010
Posted on: May 19, 2010 1:17 am

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

Lamar is just not that talented. Has good drives to get to the basket but is absolutely the worst finisher on drives I've ever seen, if anyone remotely challenges his shot he misses badly every time. There is a reason he has never scored over 17 pts in a season and is a career 46% shooter despite being 6'10 and getting a lot of close in shots, he missed all his close-in shots. He is what he is, a good rebounder, decent jump shooter, a good passer, horrible at finsihing when driving to the basket.

Since: May 12, 2008
Posted on: May 19, 2010 12:34 am

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

You do not know anything about basketball if you think Odom is the most physically gifted athlete to enter the league this era with exception of MAYBE Kobe and Lebron. Hes not even the 3rd best player on his team Kobe>>Gasul>>Bynum(healthy)>>Odom. Odoms game is not even that athletic he has a decent handle and can dribble with his left, but hes no Scottie Pippen not even close. KOBE AND LEBRON ARE FRANCHISE PLAYERS, while Odom never did or could carry a franchise. Not one time in his career has he evrer even been the best player on his team even before he played with Kobe.HERES A LIST OF MORE PHYSICALLY GIFTED PLAYERS IN THIS ERA.


Odom is in the category of Peirce, Iglidado(better player) Ray allen, Derrick Rose ,Elton Brand, Nowitski, Stoudamire, Gasul and other good non franchise players physically gifted wise. His best season was 2004 and his stats were 14ppg 10 reb 4 assist and please dont say intangibles he was exposed when Boston beat the Lakers 2 years ago he did nada. Thanks for letting me know not to waste my time reading anything you write ever again.

Since: Aug 25, 2009
Posted on: May 19, 2010 12:06 am

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

In the movie 'Bull Durham', the character played by Kevin Costner has one of the best quotes of all time. Of a talented rookie, he says, "He has a million dollar arm and a five cent head." Well, that has always reminded me of Amar'e Stoudamire, among many, many other players in all of the professional sports leagues. Stoudamire has talent to burn but ether the man believes his own press or he is simply a complete idiot. You do NOT give the opposing team the kind of motivation that calling an opposing player's monster game 'lucky' gives them! Especially when said opposing team is more talented to begin with!

Lamar Odom is one of the most talented guys in the NBA. What he lacks is the killer instinct and the desire to be The Man on his team. So he often looks like he might be loafing. but let's keep in mind that he has made himself an excellent rebounder and an above-average defender since he came into the NBA - he was neither of those things in his one year at Rhode Island. And as Berger points out, in the last five years he has more 15-rebound games than Stoudamire, more double-doubles than Stoudamire and yes, more rings than Stoudamire. And keep in mind that Odom is not a starter on his team, but he still has better numbers than the supposed superstar Amar'e Stoudamire. And yet Stoudamire calls his monster game 'lucky'? 

Amar'e, I think you better get used to some crow, becasue this Lakers team is about to hand you a lot ofit over the next three or maybe four games. Your team is over-matched, neither you nor Steve Nash are good defenders and you're up against a team that remembers how they had you guys beat in 2006, only to fail to close the deal. You think they've forgotten? You might have had  a slim chance to win a couple games before you opened your big mouth. But now? If your team wins a single game, I think you will be the ones who are lucky. And you know what, Amar'e? When you're swept out of the playoffs, you'll deserve every bit of the smack that the sportswriters will write about you and your big mouth. 

Since: Aug 4, 2008
Posted on: May 18, 2010 11:00 pm

Lucky? Stoudemire shouldn't have gone there

So now a Sun had added another log to the fire, not that there needed to have been one added. The Lakers have all the incentive that is needed. They were tossed out of the playoffs a few years back 1-4.

This has stuck in the gut of the players as well as the fans. This was enough for us. We were also graceful that they took care of the Trailblazers, a team we probably would have beaten, but would have had a more difficult time.

Now Stoudemire has gone and said that Lamar got lucky. Lamar might need a push every now and then, to get started, but Phil appears to have a method of tapping into Lamar and pushing him in the right direction.

Now all Phil has to do is place a copy of this interview in Lamar’s locker along with the rest of the team ribbing him. This will surely motivate Lamar to go above and beyond to prove that his first game against the Sun was not at all lucky.

Of course Laker fans know this of Lamar and when he is own he is unstoppable both on the defensive and offensive end of the court.

After that interview and the comments made it will be interesting to see how Lamar respond.




The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or