Cleveland, OH - According to Mary Schmitt Boyer of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Andrew Bynum is nearing clearance to begin practicing five-on-five full contact. This is huge news for the Cavaliers, who took a chance and signed Bynum this offseason. When healthy, he can be a dominant scoring threat in the post and strong defender as well.
The Philadelphia 76ers acquired Bynum from the Los Angeles Lakers last season, but Bynum never stepped foot on the court for them. He has been dealing with knee issues that many wondered if he’d be able to come back from. During the last season that he did play with the Lakers, he averaged 11.7 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks per game.
The Central Division in the Eastern Conference has four great centers, and Bynum is hoping to be Cleveland’s answer to those four players. Roy Hibbert, Joakim Noah, Andre Drummond, and Larry Sanders are all great players who are going to be matching up with Bynum on a night to night basis assuming he’s healthy enough to become a starter. Standing at 7’0″, he has a great aresenal of post moves and is very strong on the block.
One area of concern surrounding Bynum is the immaturity that he has shown at times both on and off the court. That being said, sitting out last season could be exactly what he needed to take the next step in his career. Learning that the game is not to be taken for granted, and having to watch his team play without him may very well have humbled him a bit. If that is the case, expect a very motivated Andrew Bynum in Cleveland this coming season.
His knee issues are obviously going to be a concern for the rest of his career, but this news is certainly encouraging for the Cavaliers and their fans. He’s going to be a big piece of what Cleveland does this season, and if he is able to return to 100% health, he could become a dominant force in the Eastern Conference.