If the 2011 offseason could be summed up in two words it would be “Monta Ellis.” Ken Berger (via Tim Kawakami’s Twitter) of CBSSports.com reports that the Warriors and Lakers discussed a Ellis for Lamar Odom and Shannon Brown trade that “went nowhere.” According to Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury, Monta Ellis, at the tender age of 25 but in the league for a good 7 years now, is ready to be traded to a contender:
Important note: Ellis loves playing at Oracle Arena. But he also is at the point in his career where he wants to be playing for titles.
Wow. The Warriors have to be foolish to want Odom and Shannon Brown. Historically, Odom’s value seems to appear and disappear depending on the talent surrounding him. Perhaps it has more to do with age, location, and coaching, but Odom’s Los Angeles Clipper days were lackluster. Among the Los Angeles Lakers and relatively stacked Miami Heat squad, Odom seems rather motivated on most occasions.
What actually worries me about a trade like this is the difference in ages between Odom (32) and Ellis (25), unless Shannon Brown is the real center piece of this trade. Shannon Brown is an electrifying Warrior killer for sure. But so is the Spurs journeyman Matt Bonner.
And if Odom is the centerpiece of that trade (obviously), there are a ton of red flags. This is all purely my own opinion and you can take this with a grain of salt, but Odom’s marriage to Khloe Kardashian would probably kill Odom’s inspiration to play basketball if it wasn’t in Los Angeles.
Why? Well, rumor has it that their prenuptial agreement, in the event of a divorce, has Odom paying for courtside tickets for not just her but her whole family, which I presume is for life? With that said, having been a title contender for a while now and being within Hollywood circles with Khloe, imagine how miserable he would be as a Warrior away from the limelight and think how that would kill his inspiration to play basketball. I expect candy binges like crazy on the sidelines and ballooning weight. Odom tried and has finally become part of Los Angeles’ glitterati and the activist sensibilities or tech dominant culture of Bay Area life — Steve Jobs is the closest thing to Jack Nicholson — probably doesn’t mesh well with Odom’s career trajectory.
Also, is it strange that Ellis is already on the path of wanting to “play for a contender?” I thought that was meant for aging vets in their twilight. I guess the Warriors consistent internal turmoil would do that to a player.
At any rate, with these kinds of rumors swirling and previous baggage with Ellis’ Moped-gate incident, it is probably time for the Warriors to part ways with one of their best, yet polarizing — on and off the court — players in Monta Ellis