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Lakers GM: We’re not moving Andrew Bynum. For anybody.

Mar 18, 2011, 1:42 PM EDT

Orlando Magic v Los Angeles Lakers Getty Images

Back at the trade deadline, plenty of Lakers fans were willing to ship Andrew Bynum out the door in a trade. In March, as he has gotten healthy, he has averaged 12.6 points, on 64.2 percent shooting, plus 14.6 rebounds and 2.7 blocks per game. Now, those same Lakers fans would never dream of moving him. Why would you even think that?

And you wonder how Lakers fans end up on these lists.

Fortunately for those impatient Lakers fans (and occasional impatient superstars) Mitch Kupchak is a calm and steady hand on the wheel of the franchise. The team GM does not overreact to small bumps in the long road.

And while Kupchak gets calls about Bynum, he has no intention of trading him, he told friend of this blog Mike Trudell of Lakers.com.

I’d say I get 10 to 15 phone calls a year about Andrew. I’ve called teams that have young, developing players myself. I don’t think that’s going to change. Certainly if he had played as well as he’s playing now for the last three years, teams would realize that, well, the Lakers would never trade him. But he’s had stretches where he’s played well and stretches where he hasn’t, and he’s been criticized, and I think general managers look at (those weaker stretches) and think maybe this is an opportunity for me to come in through the back door, let me make a phone call. And I understand that, and don’t think that’s going to change. But having said all that: when Andrew is healthy, and he plays like he is playing right now, you are hard pressed to look at anybody in this league and say, ‘I would trade him for that person.’

Um, anybody?

Anybody. If he’s healthy at this level he’s at, you’d have to think about anything. In other words, you may not trade him for anybody. If he helps your team and he’s what you need, and we can advance in the playoffs, then why would you take a chance and do anything? A lot of it is the right fit, the right personality for a team, and I think we have a group of players right now that are unselfish in the big picture, I really do.

Mitch Kupchak plays his cards pretty close to the vest, but he’s a straight shooter, too. If he says something, he means it.

So those Dwight Howard for Andrew Bynum trades you’ve been dreaming up Lakers fans? May want to put those on hold, if not trash them outright.

  1. loungefly74 - Mar 18, 2011 at 1:58 PM

    not only does bynum present match-up problems for opponents, he has the right ego…in that he defers to kobe, which is the right thing to do. i’m glad he is a laker and is worth the gamble (concerning his health). go Lakers!

    • denverhoopdreams - Mar 18, 2011 at 2:05 PM

      Bynum scares me in a playoff scenario if he can stay healthy.

    • lakesidelakersfan - Mar 18, 2011 at 9:18 PM

      If AB stays healthy the rest of year, it’s another 3-peat. Lakers have too many allstars in the front court to rotate in for anyone with the exception OKC that can hang with them.

  2. mytthor - Mar 18, 2011 at 2:38 PM

    The biggest test the Lakers will face in the next several years is whether Kobe will be able to scale back his game as Bynum and Gasol become the focal points of the team. Already the Lakers have trouble getting Gasol touches. After 2013, I’d say, Kobe needs to decide whether he wants to have a shot at a title for 5 more years after that by being option 1c on a three headed monster, averaging 21 and 7 assists, or if he wants to score 25 a game with decreasing efficiency while his big men grouse about not getting touches and they lose to OKC year after year in the playoffs. He will have to choose between tarnishing his legacy as “the man” and tarnishing his legacy as a winner. If he can adjust, he’ll have a shot at 8 titles and 2nd on the all time scoring list.

  3. ocgunslinger - Mar 18, 2011 at 4:39 PM

    Something about big men who develop knee problems never seem to reach their full potential. However when healthy Bynum is a game changing force, plays within the system and I have been a supporter of his for several years. All that being said he does and will always have those knee issues and if Howard was available I would hope Kupchak would give it a hard look before turning it down.

  4. dolphinatic - Mar 18, 2011 at 4:41 PM

    I am just glad management knows more than some fans. Trading him would have been a mistake. Skill sets and size like his are very hard to replace. Lets hope he can stay healthy (knocks on wood).

    • zackd2 - Mar 18, 2011 at 6:25 PM

      “Trading him would have been a mistake.”

      But another knee injury and it’s going to be “should have traded him while he still had value”

      • dolphinatic - Mar 18, 2011 at 9:25 PM

        Not in my book.

  5. musilly - Mar 18, 2011 at 5:13 PM

    Obviously, the injury history concerns me (even if some of it was freak occurrence)…but for now I’m mainly just happy that he’s returned to form. One thing to watch…there was an old preseason game where Bynum had position and the Machine refused to give him the ball. Bynum yelled “Give me the f*****n’ ball!”

    I think he needs to do that more, especially with Kobe’s decline. His forehead is usually furrowed and when he does interviews, he seems passive-aggressive. I think he’s bottling up some resentment and it might be a good thing if he lets it out and forces the Lakers to give him more offensive opportunities.

  6. schoolboy834 - Mar 18, 2011 at 7:18 PM

    as a laker fan, i would still move him. Especially now. We have absolutely no reason to believe he will stay healthy,and what the point of being so dominant if your only on the floor half the season

  7. omniusprime - Mar 19, 2011 at 9:24 AM

    Kupchak is smart to keep Bynum as there are few centers in the NBA who exceed his talent level. I wasn’t one of the Laker fans wanting to trade Bynum, especially for that whining loser Melo. Yeah look at how poorly the Knicks are playing now that they’ve gotten suckered into taking the whining loser Melo. Bynum has had some tough luck with injuries but as we keep seeing when he’s healthy he’s one of the best centers in the game. Bynum is unselfish and does what the team needs from him which is play defense and rebound. Bynum does need to get more touches offensively because he’s very efficient at scoring because he can dominate the paint. With a healthy Bynum the Repeat World Champion Lakers will Threepeat this June!

  8. jimsjam33 - Mar 27, 2011 at 12:35 PM

    Bynum for Superman . In a minute !

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