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NBA alum Lamar Odom is peeling back more layers of his past with drug and sex addiction.
Odom revealed that in the summer of 2004 he tried cocaine for the first time — a feeling he described as “orgasmic” — in a new interview with Yahoo Sports in which he also details his recovery aided by ketamine treatment. In 2004, he was on the Heat before he’d go on to spend seven season with the Lakers, his longest stint with a team in his NBA career.
“I had unleashed a demon,” Odom said of his first bout with cocaine, which occurred at a swanky hotel in Miami.
“Coke and sex went together every time after that. They had to intertwine.”
Since then, Odom’s experience with drugs, sex and partying only escalated, and eventually contributed to the decline of his once promising NBA career.
Fast forward to June 14, 2009, when the Odom and the Lakers defeated the Magic to collect the storied franchise’s 15th NBA championship.
After a night of heavy partying, Odom nearly missed the Lakers’ planned victory parade. He showed up late looking like he had a long night, then-Lakers athletic trainer Gary Vitti told the website.
Ahead of his arrival to a coordinated location in downtown Los Angeles, Odom dodged Vitti and attempted to make up excuses as to why he couldn’t attend.
“It was obvious that Lamar had been partying all night,” Vitti recalled to Yahoo. “That was really the only time I felt scared for him. It’s one thing to smoke weed here and there. It’s another thing to get on that other stuff.”
Odom’s drug addiction worsened through the years.
In October 2015, he was found unconscious inside the Nevada brothel, Love Ranch, following a cocaine overdose. The incident resulted in Odom falling into a coma for three days. He suffered 12 strokes, six heart attacks and damage to his kidney and liver.
After the near-fatal incident, Odom wasn’t done with drug addiction.
The former NBA star was still struggling with drug abuse, according a friend, who reached out to Mike “Zappy” Zapolin for help. Zapolin, an entrepreneur and the director of “Lamar Odom: Reborn,” considers himself an advocate for psychedelic medicine in the treatment of depression and anxiety — two things Odom struggles with.
Zapolin, at the time, offered to speak with Odom, and told him that ketamine treatment could help his mental health issues. Odom decided to “roll the dice” and agreed to try it.
Odom’s treatments, which began about two-and-a-half years ago, included six doses of ketamine over a period of two to three weeks. His treatments of the science-based method were overseen by doctors who monitored Odom’s blood pressure and heart rate.
After his first ketamine treatment, Odom says in the documentary, “I never felt this good in my life.” He described the feeling as “heaven,” adding, “I didn’t want it to stop.”
Today, at age 41, Odom maintains he no longer wakes up craving cocaine. He told Yahoo Sports that he is continuing his ketamine treatments and taking boosters with the consent of his doctors.
Odom spoke with the outlet in promotion of his “Lamar Odom: Reborn” documentary, which chronicles his experimentation with psychedelic medicines to treat his depression and drug addiction.
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