Lamar Odom was their leader. He pointed the way setting a tone for a group of Lakers reserves that helped win two straight NBA titles. By embracing his role coming off the bench he showed teammates like Jordan Farmar Josh Powell and Shannon Brown what it meant to be part of a championship team.
Now nearly five seasons removed from the first of the Lakers' back-to-back championships in 2009 and 2010 those who followed the lefty with the easy smile and smooth game hope he can find his way out of some dark days.
"It sucks to hear" Farmar said in a phone interview this week when asked about the string of misfortunes following Odom these days from alleged drug use to an arrest on suspicion of driving under the influence.
"It's unfortunate. A couple of us have reached out to him and haven't heard back. That's just a sign of him going through some tough times."
Tough times are nothing new for Odom.
As Lee Jenkins wrote poignantly in a 2009 Sports Illustrated profile:
"The happiest La...