It's official. The Lamar Odom as a Dallas Maverick experiment did not work. Placed on the inactive list for the remainder of the season, Odom in Maverick blue won't be seen again. The question on Mavs fans' lips, who's going to take his minutes as backup to Dirk Nowitzki? Worryingly, twice in April whilst Odom was still an active player, Rick Carlisle went to Brian Cardinal over Odom to relieve Dirk. One could only assume then that 'The Custodian', or rather 'The Janitor' would mop up the rest of Odom's minutes he had already begun eating into. Lo and behold in the Mavs most recent game against Sacramento, the first since Odom and the team agreed to part ways, Brian 'Janitor' Cardinal logged not one single minute! This, good people, is a travesty! A sham! How could Rick Carlisle stray from bricked three pointers, errant passes leading to turnovers and the occasional charge drawn? If Carlisle knew anything about defending a championship, Cardinal would be in the starting line-up! I mean, what has this Dirk guy really done to deserve the starting spot anyway? In all seriousness though, there are two massive reasons (seven foot tall reasons in fact) why Brian Cardinal should never log another minute for the Mavericks, despite Odom's departure. The first reason is an obvious one, Brandan Wright. Having a breakout season, and finally showing that yes, perhaps he should have been a lottery pick, Wright is athletic, entertaining, hard working and making the most of every minute he is given. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TpOOZQLe4ao Nonetheless Wright is slender and underweight compared to most centers in the league. This is a disadvantage in many analysts' and commentators' eyes, especially when matching up against a player with a more traditional style, for instance Marc Gasol. To allow Wright to play power forward when Dirk needs a breather is a move to not only increase Wright's minutes and production, but to in many cases grant him an advantage size wise, that he doesn't have when playing the five spot. Reason number two of course, is fan-favourite Yi Jianlian. Carlisle went to Yi for eight and a half minutes against the Kings, not only giving Nowitzki a rest, but also unleashing an offensive force. It could have been the most focused Yi had ever been in his entire NBA career. He shot 80% from the floor for eight points, pulled down two rebounds and made defensive plays most wouldn't have thought him capable of (even the biased Dallas based commentators were surprised). http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2pNgQMYnE8k Yi is young and by all means a project that is under development. Thus, there will be very few situations where Yi will be called upon by Carlisle to play heavy minutes (he has logged fifteen minutes or more just twice this season). However when he is locked in, Yi looks to be one of the better catch and shoot perimeter big men in the league. When those shots fall it certainly gets the American Airlines arena excited, screams of "YIIIIIIIIIIIIII" raining down as if they were Jianlian jumpers. So it seems Lamar Odom can rest easy. A likely playoff X factor for the Mavs has been lost, though he surely by now is back to his life of gorging candy, devising unisex fragrances and helping his wife convince her best friend not to get breast implants. And he is safe in the knowledge that the mess he made within the Mavericks organisation won't be cleaned by a professional janitor in Brian Cardinal, but rather by the young prospects the Mavericks are flaunting and attempting to solidify their future with.