Lamar Odom returns to the Clippers as part of a four-team trade. (Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles…)
With Mo Williams finally deciding Friday to exercise his $8.5-million contract option, the Clippers and Dallas Mavericks were able to agree to a four-team trade that will bring Lamar Odom back to the Clippers team that drafted him in 1999.
Williams will go to Utah and the Jazz will send the Mavericks a trade exception when the deal becomes official, probably later today, said sources who were not authorized to speak publicly on the trade.
Odom will make $8.2 million for the 2012-13 season, but the Mavericks could have bought out his contract for $2.4 million by Friday if Dallas didn’t find willing trade partners in L.A. and Utah.
The Jazz could take on Williams’ $8.5-million salary and not have to send a player to the Mavericks, which was their preference, because the Jazz instead will send the trade exception it got from trading Mehmet Okur to the New Jersey Nets last season. The trade exception is worth at least $8.5 million.
The Clippers will send the rights to their second-round draft pick, Furkan Aldemir, to the Houston Rockets as part of the deal.
The Clippers had some trepidation about acquiring Odom, 32, because of his poor season and seemingly disinterested attitude in Dallas last season after he demanded a trade from the Lakers, who tried to move him in an attempt to land point guard Chris Paul.
But the Clippers had any fears allayed after Coach Vinny Del Negro and President Andy Roeser both met with Odom on Thursday at the team’s practice facility in Playa Vista.
Williams, who was drafted in 2003 by Utah, wants to be a starter, but now has to compete with Devin Harris for that spot. Williams also knew he still would have been behind Paul.
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