A native of Quill Lake, Saskatchewan, Lyle Odelein was an offensive and physical force in junior hockey with the WHL's Moose Jaw Warriors. He was taken 141st overall by the Montreal Canadiens in the 1986 NHL Entry Draft then gained two years of minor pro experience in the AHL and IHL. Odelein played 52 games for Montreal in 1990-91 and impressed with his stubborn refusal to back down against enemy skaters.
A rugged blueliner, Odelein was a tough, physical player in his own zone and was a mainstay on the Habs' blueline through the 1995-96 season. He was a key defender when the club won the Stanley Cup in 1993 and registered a career-high eleven goals the next season. Odelein was traded to the New Jersey Devils in the summer of 1996. Prior to joining the Devils for the 1996-97 season, the veteran blueliner played hard in two games for Canada at the 1996 World Cup of Hockey.
Odelein thrived in New Jersey's close checking and physical system. He was a fixture on their blueline until he was traded to the Phoenix Coyotes late in the 1999-00 season. Odelein's stay in Phoenix was short lived as he joined the expansion Columbus Blue Jackets in 2000-01. A durable defender, Odelein experience on the back end helped the team remain competitive in their first year. After 65 games with Columbus in 2001-02, Odelein was on the move again, this time joining the Chicago Blackhawks where he would play parts of two seasons before he was traded to the Dallas Stars in the late stages of the 2002-03 season.
After only five games with the Stars in 2002-03, Odelein joined the Florida Panthers later that summer and became one of the club's more durable players. Following a lock out year in 2004-05, Odelein was acquired by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the summer of 2005. However, after only 27 games he injured his knee and underwent knee surgery in Febraury 2006. Odelein has not offically announced his retirement.