Clippers players talk about Lamar Odom's potential return

Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

Lamar Odom's return to the Los Angeles Clippers appears imminent and the players seem excited and optimistic.

Lamar Odom isn't quite a Los Angeles Clipper again, but it sure sounds like he will be soon. After his two-hour meeting with head coach Doc Rivers, several players commented on his potential return to Sam Amick of USA Today:

"Everyone who was here (with the Clippers last season) has always told me (that) Lamar was a good guy, a great locker room guy - funny, never complained - even with the struggles," [Jared] Dudley, who came to the Clippers via trade during the summer, told USA TODAY Sports before their loss to the Memphis Grizzlies on Monday night. "His struggle was getting in shape and getting motivated. I think that once he got in the season, he was motivated, they said. The only thing I've heard is he's a good guy. That's the honest truth. It seemed like, when he came into the locker room (during a visit at the team's facility on Friday), when he was high-fiving every guy, like he was a good personality."

"I think it's great," Clippers reserve forward Matt Barnes told USA TODAY Sports. "For one, as a friend who is wanting him to get his life back on track, I think that's important. But he's an intelligent big (man) who knows how to play the game. Hopefully he can get himself back in shape and be a great addition to our team.

"I knew Doc wanted him in the summer, so let's just hope. I think he'd be a welcome addition to our team. He looked good (during his visit). He was back smiling. He's great. Great personality. Great guy. His weight looked good. He looked good."

DeAndre Jordan echoed Barnes' statement and added that Odom helped him on and off the floor last season. Dudley said that he sees Odom joining the team "100 percent."

Odom has been working out with trainer Rob McClanaghan away from the tabloids and the spotlight at the University of Rhode Island, his alma mater, as reported by Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski. A source close to him said he was looking "very good" physically but isn't ready to play yet, via Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix:

The Cliippers have an open roster spot and a bench that needs help on the inside, so there appears to be an opportunity for Odom to make an impact if he does get in game shape and sign as expected.

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