GREENBURGH, N.Y. - Three Knicks, all former teammates of Lamar Odom, reacted with shock and sadness at the news that the former NBA and reality show star was fighting for his life after being found unconscious Tuesday in a Las Vegas brothel.
"It's just sad," said Carmelo Anthony, who played with Odom on the Olympic team that went to Athens in 2004. "He was a friend of mine. It's a sad situation to be a part of, just to see the whole story of where he was as a player, as a person, and where he is right now. The only thing you can do right now is pray for him, pray for his family right now."
Knicks coach Derek Fisher, a former teammate of Odom's on the Lakers, called him one of the greatest people he's ever known.
"Just everyone else's happiness and well-being was always more important to him," Fisher said. "He was always willing to sacrifice his own opportunities, his own minutes, his own shots. At times, he sacrificed other things in life to do for everyone else. And sometimes that left him in last place, but that's just the type of person he is."
Sasha Vujacic was also Odom's teammate on the Lakers, and he was visibly distraught talking about his situation.
"We played a long time together. We won together. We understood what it means to be in a band of brothers," he said. "What it means to go through a lot of things together. It's just life. It takes a different direction later on. It's sad in a way. He's someone with a heart of gold. And right now he's fighting the battle of his life. We should all be cheering him on in our thoughts and prayers."
Odom, 35, hasn't played in the NBA since 2013, though he was officially on the Knicks' roster for the final day of the 2013-14 season. He reportedly had been talking about making a comeback.
Said Fisher: "From a basketball standpoint, he was an amazing teammate. Really an amazing player that possesses all the skills necessary to do everything on the floor you need done. I think his defense and rebounding was more spectacular than anything he can do on the floor offensively. Really as close to one of the top reasons as to why we won championships in '09 and '10 because of him."
Notes & quotes: Kristaps Porzingis (quad) did not practice Wednesday. Arron Afflalo (sore left hamstring) and Kevin Seraphin (sore right knee) were limited.