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Andrew Bynum out indefinitely, no timeline to join Sixers

Nov 24, 2012, 8:34 PM EDT

Injured Philadelphia 76ers Andrew Bynum smiles before the start of the NBA basketball game between the 76ers and the Denver Nuggets in Philadelphia Reuters

Philadelphia rolled the dice this summer on making Andrew Bynum their future — they traded Andre Iguodala for him. They sold the fans on how they could build around him.

It’s far too early to say it came up snake eyes, but at the very least this is not going to be an easy point to make now.

Throw out that hopeful Christmas timeline, the Sixers have no idea when Bynum will return, Sixers GM Tony DiLeo told Dei Lynam of CSNPhilly.com.

“The bottom line is Andrew is out indefinitely,” DiLeo said. “We don’t know when he’ll be back. Only Andrew can answer that question — his body can answer that question. Basically there are no timelines.”

Ugh.

The details of the medical diagnosis are not good. Not good at all.

All four doctors have examined Bynum, studied the MRIs and come to the same conclusion: bilateral bone bruises and weakened cartilage in both knees. That’s exactly what general manager Tony DiLeo revealed on Saturday in an impromptu press conference.

This is different than the report that came out last week — from a doctor not involved in the diagnosis and who has not seen the MRIs — that called for surgery. That report was pure speculation, what the Sixers gave Saturday were facts. Just not pleasant ones.

Bynum is doing swimming and other low-impact conditioning. But there will need to be some on-court work after that.

And as Philly fans start to pile on Bynum, they should know that he will play through pain — he put off knee surgery in 2010 to be part of the Lakers title run, then in 2011 again played through a bone bruise to help the Lakers through 10 playoff games. He will play through pain.

But not this, and not right now.

And for a Philly team that gambled big on him, that sold a lot of season tickets based on his play, this is not good.

And we haven’t even gotten to the part where Bynum is a free agent next summer and both Philadelphia and other team are going to offer him his next contract, figuring out the money and years they should put on the table.

That is a whole new risk, but one based in part on what is going on now.

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