The University of Rhode Island community continues to keep former Rhody basketball star Lamar Odom in its thoughts and prayers as he remains in a Las Vegas hospital. Known for his warmth, kindness and generosity while he was on campus, Lamar delighted Rhode Island students, alumni and fans with his talent and joy for the game. Those who follow Rhode Island basketball will never forget his heroics in the finals of the 1999 Atlantic 10 title game against Temple when he hit a winning 32-foot shot in the final seconds, giving URI its first A-10 championship and its second straight NCAA berth.
He took his game to the NBA’s Los Angeles Clippers and then the Lakers, where he helped the Lakers win two titles. And now, as people hope and pray for his full recovery, tributes from former teammates, sports writers, columnists and pundits pour in. While acknowledging his imperfections, they have highlighted his heart of gold, respect for his teammates and rivals, polite manner and openness during interviews.
This is the Lamar Odom who forged his NBA credentials at the University of Rhode Island, the player who appreciated any high-five, a congratulatory comment from a fellow student, and who never brushed anyone off. He will remain a part of the URI story for years to come.