We broke the story ... Byron filed for divorce from his college sweetheart Anita Scott last year after 29 years of marriage -- right before he signed a $17 million contract with the Lakers.
But Anita says they were living large way before the Lakers gig -- and in new court docs obtained by TMZ Sports, she spells out why Scott needs to open up his checkbook.
Here's a sample of the life Anita says she was accustomed to during her marriage to Byron:
-- Anita says the couple lived in several insane cribs over the years (8 bedroom pad in NJ, 7 bedroom house in New Orleans, swanky 4 bedroom penthouse in Cleveland).
BALLER SHOPPING SPREES
-- Anita says she "regularly" bought clothes from Chanel, Gucci, Prada and Louis Vuitton ... with no specific dollar limit.
-- Anita says she dropped at least $600 every six weeks for hair upkeep ... and $500-per-month on manis, pedis and massages. Plus another $400-per-month on facials and "other personal maintenance."
-- The Bahamas. Once a year. First class airfare. Suites at top-rated resorts. Oh, and they'd often pay for additional family members to join along.
Anita says she needs spousal support asap, since she doesn't have a job and is living in a cramped 3 bedroom, 2.5 bathroom condo in Culver City which is "not comparable to the lavish and spacious homes we purchased during the marriage."