When we last saw Andrew Bynum, he was sitting on a Philadelphia 76ers bench. He had missed the entire 2012-2013 season, after coming from his best season as a pro with the Los Angeles Lakers. Bynum was traded away from the Lakers to the Sixers in a mega deal that brought Dwight Howard to the LA franchise. Howard, of course, left the Lakers for the Houston Rockets last week.
Now, Bynum will be looking to officially start fresh away from the Lakers, as he and the Cleveland Cavaliers agreed to a deal on Wednesday evening. Bynum and the Cavs are hopeful that he’ll be ready for the start of training camp.
If Andrew Bynum is healthy, there is no doubt that he has the potential to be one of the best big men in the league. When he last played, he averaged 18 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks a game during the 2011-2012 season. If the Cavaliers can get any semblance of that type of production, then they should be a shoe-in for a playoff spot in the relatively top-heavy east, provided the rest of the team stays healthy as well.
The biggest potential story in this signing is what it could mean for the Cavaliers next summer. With LeBron James having the option to test free agency, a potential cast of Kyrie Irving and Bynum, to go along with Tristan Thompson, Anderson Varejao, and Dion Waiters could be very intriguing. Add in the No. 1 overall pick from this year’s draft in Anthony Bennett, and the free agency pickups of Jarrett Jack and Earl Clark, and Cleveland could be a very irresistible place for The King.
Bynum’s contract includes only $6 million in guaranteed money, and there is a team-option in the second year of the deal. But Bynum could make up to $24 million if he proves to be healthy and excels with the team.
Overall, this move is low risk with a potential championship reward down the line.