Skip to content

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar basically questions Andrew Bynum’s love of basketball

Dec 29, 2013, 3:30 PM EDT

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Andrew Bynum Getty Images

When the Los Angeles Lakers first drafted Andrew Bynum they brought in Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as his personal coach — people forget Kareem was about as fundamentally sound a center as the game had seen. He seemed a good fit with the very raw Bynum.

Kareem tried to work with Bynum, but they clashed. It was the first of a lot of clashes over the course of Bynum’s young NBA career, one that has seen the highs of an NBA title and the lows of his lost season in Philadelphia.

The Cleveland Cavaliers gambled on Bynum this season and now they want to cut their losses — Bynum has been suspended indefinitely and is being shopped around for a trade. By Jan. 7 Bynum will either be moved or just outright cut in Cleveland.

Sunday Abdul-Jabbar took to Facebook and had these comments about Bynum.

I believe Andrew has always had the potential to help a team when he puts his heart into it. He just doesn’t seem to be consistent with his commitment to the game. That can lead to a lot of frustration for any team that has signed him.

When I worked with Andrew I found him to be bright & hardworking but I think he got bored with the repetitive nature of working on basketball fundamentals day in and day out… but they are the keys to long term success.

In my opinion Andrew is the type of person who walks to the beat of “a different drummer”. So we won’t know the facts until Andrew decides to tell us what actually is the issue and shares his thoughts.

What Kareem says here echoes what you hear out of Cleveland, and out of Bynum’s other NBA stops.

Bynum was suspended just after he with Coach Mike Brown amid Bynum’s minutes and touches dropping. Whatever was said after that meeting Bynum got suspended after it. People around Cleveland saw Bynum as a disruptive force in an already troubled locker room, they didn’t think he was working hard enough to get right.

This has always been the story with Bynum, teammates have long questioned his love of and committment to the game. He can work hard when motivated — which is often tied to getting his next big contract — but as Kareem notes getting good at basketball is about repetition. Stephen Curry makes 500 jump shots a day in the offseason for a reason. Bynum doesn’t enjoy that kind of detail work on his game, and it shows.

But he will get another chance. He has been up and down with Cleveland this season, Bynum is seen as a backup big man and while he will have to take a healthy pay cut with his next deal there will be a next one. Big men like Bynum are in short supply and some good teams (Heat, Clippers) are the kind that could be interested in him playing a limited reserve role.

Latest Posts
  1. 67RIEFNS No. 22: Disappointing second-year players looking for redemption

    Oct 20, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT

    2013 NBA Draft Lottery 2013 NBA Draft Lottery

    Anthony Bennett, Otto Porter, Alex Len, Nerlens Noel, Ben McLemore, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, C.J. McCollum among those looking to bounce back after underwhelming rookie years

  2. Joakim Noah wants Tom Thibodeau to do yoga with him

    Oct 19, 2014, 10:00 PM EDT

    cd0ymzcznguwzdbhnduynddiytjhm2yyzthlmtjjotqwyyznptq2njewnzjmmgrhmwvjyjm2mtnjzju3ymqwzgm4zmmy AP

    Tom Thibodeau is not the yoga type.

  3. Cavs coach David Blatt will treat Monday’s preseason minutes like the regular season

    Oct 19, 2014, 8:30 PM EDT

    LeBron James LeBron James

    LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love will take the floor together for the first time since the preseason opener.

  4. NBA’s 44-minute game clocks in at under two hours, players barely notice

    Oct 19, 2014, 7:01 PM EDT

    NETS V CELTICS NETS V CELTICS

    Experimental preseason game between Nets and Celtics took place Sunday.

  5. Nets coach Hollins on 44-minute game: ‘The change will be for the guys who don’t start’

    Oct 19, 2014, 3:30 PM EDT

    Brooklyn Nets v Sacramento Kings - NBA Global Games Beijing Getty Images

    Hollins won’t adjust starters minutes as he coaches the Nets during the experimental game Sunday.

  6. Gloria James narrates LeBron’s latest Beats commercial

    Oct 19, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT

    LeBron James LeBron James

    “Akron” celebrates James’ homecoming.

  7. Carmelo Anthony on fewer back-to-backs: “That’s the dream”

    Oct 19, 2014, 12:30 PM EDT

    Toronto Raptors v New York Knicks Getty Images

    The Knicks star says the biggest issue for players is the amount of consecutive games they play.

  8. Carmelo Anthony doesn’t think he’ll win scoring title playing in Knicks’ Triangle Offense

    Oct 19, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT

    Carmelo Anthony Carmelo Anthony

    Anthony should have more help than in the recent past, but he’ll need to score plenty in order for his team to have a shot.

  9. Hakeem Olajuwon: Dwight Howard ‘ready’ for MVP-type season

    Oct 18, 2014, 11:00 PM EDT

    Houston Rockets v Dallas Mavericks Houston Rockets v Dallas Mavericks

    Olajuwon is employed by the Rockets, and has been working with Howard the last two summers.

  10. Report: Celtics likely to waive Will Bynum after acquiring him in trade with Pistons

    Oct 18, 2014, 5:00 PM EDT

    Will Bynum AP

    Celtics have too many guaranteed contracts, and are already set at Bynum’s position.

Featured video

What are impacts of NBA's new TV deal?
Top 10 NBA Player Searches
  1. B. Beal (3584)
  2. L. James (3456)
  3. D. Rose (3443)
  4. J. Lin (3323)
  5. N. Noel (3221)