Last night, the Lakers made their first trip to Philadelphia for the first time since the huge trade that occurred over the summer involving Andrew Bynum. Unfortunately, Bynum has been unable to show 76er fans what he is made of due to injuries in both knees. Because of this, NBA fans were not able to enjoy the anticipated Howard vs. Bynum matchup, but it didn’t stop Bynum from sending a few choice words towards the Lakers.
After the Lakers defeated the 76ers last night, Andrew Bynum shared why he felt that Kobe Bryant hurt his development as one of the league’s best centers.
“I thought it really helped me a lot obviously at first, because he draws so much attention it’s hard for guys to double team and key on you, so it helped me tremendously. Later, I felt I was able to get the ball more and do more things with the ball, so I could definitely see how it could stunt growth.”
In response to Bynum’s comments, Kobe stated that he was not offended and actually agreed with them.
“For sure, because when you’re playing with me you obviously have to sacrifice something. Same thing with me and Shaq. You kind of off-set each other to a certain extent. So, I mean, that’s true. When he gets back and he’s healthy, he’ll come out here and he’ll be the focal point of their attack and he’ll be getting the ball more and you’ll see big games from him more consistently.”
The only negative thing Kobe had to say about Bynum was in regards to his new afro.
“I don’t know what he’s doing with that perm, but I guess he’s a trendsetter.”
Bynum’s opinion about Kobe stunting his growth as a dominant center was not the only thing that he had to say about the Lakers. He also shed light on what he believes his current ranking is amongst current NBA Centers.
“Personally, I think they traded No. 1 for No. 2.”
Bynum was obviously referring to the Lakers trading him to the 76ers in order to land Dwight Howard. He also warned that Howard will have to get used to not having the ball in his hands playing along side of Kobe Bryant.
“I think Dwight is a great player, but he’s going to have to get accustomed to playing with Kobe and not touching the ball every single play.”
With Bynum not being able to play a single game for the 76ers so far this season, it remains to be seen what he is capable of doing as the number 1 option. Perhaps, he will show the league exactly what he can do now that he doesn’t have Kobe Bryant on his team.
Before the season began, Ross Pickering (creator of Lakerholicz website) compared Bynum and Howard in each game that they’ve played each other in so far in their careers. It looks like the Lakers actually traded number 2 for number 1. We’ll see what Bynum has in store when he finally makes his 76ers debut.
You can check out the rest of Bynum’s comments here.