Former Lawrence North Basketball star and current NBA player Greg Oden was arrested in Lawrence this morning after allegedly punching a woman in the face.
The incident happened around 3:30 a.m. according to a Lawrence Police Department report. Officers arrived at the home to find the victim crying and lying across a bed holding her face, police said. A woman described as the victim’s best friend first told officers what happened.
The witness claims Oden punched a female victim in the face. An officer observed “blood, swelling to the nose, lacerations to the forehead and nose area of the victim’s face.”
The victim told officers that she fell but was unable to advise when and where.
Oden told police he had dated the victim for two years, but the couple had been broken up for about two months.
A relative who lives at the residence told police she was awakened by Oden and the victim arguing. She told police that “every time the two visit and go out, there is an argument to follow.”
Oden told police:
“Things got out of control and I started to go after the victim. My relative and witness tried to hold me back, but as I swung my arms to move them out of the way, then punched the victim in the face. I was wrong and I know what has to happen.”
A prep star at Lawrence North, Oden and teammate Mike Conley Jr. led the Wildcats to three successive state titles (2004-2006) and continued their success at Ohio State, where they led the Buckeyes to the national title game as freshmen.
After one year of college, Oden entered the NBA Draft and was the No. 1 overall selection by Portland, one pick ahead of NBA superstar Kevin Durant. Oden missed his entire rookie season following microfracture surgery on his right knee as missed time would soon become the theme of Oden’s pro career. He managed to play 82 games over two years with the Blazers before missing three entire seasons to ongoing knee ailments (2011-13).
Oden made a comeback last season, signing a free agent deal with the Miami Heat. The reserve big man played just 23 times for the Heat though he started six games.
In three total seasons, Oden averaged 8.0 points and 6.2 rebounds in his career. He’s currently an unrestricted agent and word is he’s in talks with the L.A. Clippers.