Aug 15, 2011, 9:57 AM EST
When people start talking Lakers and trades, Andrew Bynum’s name comes up. More often then it should. For one, these finals showed the importance of having a big, shot blocking presence in the paint and Bynum is one of the better players in the league at that job. Secondly, Jim Buss loves him and that makes him almost untouchable.
Bynum doesn’t want to be traded, but all the attention is flattering, he told the Los Angeles Times.
It’s good to know everybody wants me; that means I’ll be in this game for some time. I like L.A., and don’t want to go anywhere else. It’d be good to stay in one place your whole career, and the Lakers are the most storied franchise in the league, everyone knows who the Lakers are, and I appreciate the Lakers’ love.
Bynum can be a bit of a dichotomy. For a lot of fans the image in their head of Bynum is the shirtless guy walking off the court after giving a forearm shiver to J.J. Barea in the playoffs. A move that will cost Bynum five games at the start of next season (whenever that is). It was an immature move from a 23-year-old who can at other times be one of the more thoughtful and honest Lakers. He has flashes of maturity, like when he talks in this Q&A about learning Spanish for his family and taking piano lessons this summer because it calms him. He is one of the better read players in the league.
Then he can turn around and park in handicap spots. Really, he acts like a lot of 23-year-olds — bouncing between maturity and immaturity with ease.
Bynum said he is not going overseas to play. He has been working out doing a lot of boxing training with Alex Ariza, the conditioning coach for Manny Pacquiao and other fighters. He says he has lost body fat and gotten stronger, all without putting strain on his knees. Which would be a good thing or the Lakers… or wherever he ends up playing next year.
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