When Andrew Bynum was traded to the 76ers, all of Philadelphia was ecstatic. The last time the 76ers were the talk of the NBA was when they signed Elton Brand, which turned out to be a waste. Many pundits were viewing the Sixers as a dark horse in the East, a definite top-4 seed. With a point guard-center duo that was arguably tops in the league, the 76ers finally had hope. The consensus around the 76ers’ fan base was that while trading away Iguodala, Harkless, Vucevic, and a first round pick was a lot to give up, the idea of getting an All-Star center made the trade totally worth it.
The season began, and what started off as an unknown timetable for Andrew Bynum turned into exactly what we all had feared: Andrew Bynum never suiting up for the 76ers. At first it wasn’t that disappointing that Bynum wasn’t ready to go by the start of the year, there was still hope that he would suit up soon. After the All-Star break however, Sixers fans began to realize that all hope was lost. The debacle left Philly fans feeling helpless and frustrated.
Photo Credit: DAVID MAIALETTI /Philly.com Photographer
It’s not just the fact that Bynum didn’t play a game all year, although that is frustrating in its self. Look at Derrick Rose, he hasn’t played a game all year, but Chicago fans have no hard feelings for their star. The reason for this is not only because Derrick Rose has produced for Chicago, while Bynum has done nothing for Philadelphia. The main reason is that Derrick Rose has shown everyone through interviews, YouTube videos, and everything else that he is trying his absolute hardest to be back better than ever in order to lead the Bulls as far as they can go. When it comes to Bynum, it seems like he is completely complacent with logging zero minutes this year, getting his paycheck for sitting on the bench, and looking for a max-contract next year with whatever team pays him the most. With Derrick Rose you had the redemption videos that got everyone excited, but with Bynum all you had was different hair styles every week, with no sign of any desire to get back on the court.
The most frustrating part of this pathetic saga was when Bynum injured his other knee. Rather than injuring it during his intense rehab, he injured it while bowling. On top of healing his right knee, he now had to heal his left knee. To make matters worse, Bynum’s agent decided to further tease the Sixers by releasing phony injury updates that gave fans a glimmer of hope, only to hear after every positive update that Drew had another setback.
Looking back on this trade, I regret everything about it. Andre Iguodala could have continued to contribute to this team, Nikola Vucevic has the second most rebounds in the league this year, and Moe Harkless is showing promise in his rookie year. Andrew Bynum has been nothing but a distraction, a tease, and a disappointment. While Bynum’s career with Philly has been surrounded by uncertainty, one thing is certain, he will be joining Nnamdi Asomugha on Philadelphia’s all-bust team.