Blog Entry

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

Posted on: May 11, 2011 4:17 pm
Edited on: May 11, 2011 4:21 pm
 
Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant says center Andrew Bynum will have to "fall in line" on offense next season. Posted by Ben Golliver. kobe-bynum

What a week for Los Angeles Lakers center Andrew Bynum. First, he unleashes the dirtiest play in recent memory to get himself ejected from his team's last game of the season, a disappointing loss to the Dallas Mavericks. Then, he apologizes for the hit but gets slapped with a five-game suspension that will cost him hundreds of thousands of dollars.

During his exit interview, SI.com reported that Bynum tried to look forward to next year with optimism, predicting that he will be a bigger part of the team's offense next season.
"Offensively for me, this series and throughout the playoffs I was just being more aggressive, just give us a solid option. I did a decent job at that, had a decent playoffs this year, but it wasn't enough. I just [want to] come back expecting that next year I'll be a bigger part of the team and I'll work to be a bigger part of the team."

"In order for this team, if it was to be the same, [playing a greater offensive role] would have to be the case," he reiterated.
On Wednesday, Lakers All-Star guard Kobe Bryant, the team's leading scorer, poo-pooed that idea according to NBA.com.
But Bryant made it clear that the food chain for the Lakers won’t be changing anytime soon, at least not on his watch.

“Well, it’s tough to do on this team,” he said of moving Bynum up on the list of offensive priorities. “Ultimately, he’ll have to fall in line. Because I’m gonna shoot the ball. We all know that. Pau is going to get his touches. He’s no. 2. And then [Andrew] will have to fall in line.”
Ouch. 

For the record, Bryant was No. 2 in the entire league in field goal attempts last season, averaging 20.1 shots per game. Pau Gasol shot 13.7, Lamar Odom shot 10.9, Ron Artest shot 8.0, Shannon Bryown shot 7.8 and then, finally, Bynum shot 7.6. There's no way Bynum, who looked like the second best center in the NBA for major stretches during the playoffs, should have five teammates taking more shots than him. I understand the "get in line" sentiment but that's a ridiculously long line. I'd be frustrated too.

Clearly, the No. 1 thing holding back Bynum is his persistent injury problems. It's hard to design an offensive system around a player who regularly misses games and has dealt with knee surgeries. It's much easier to say "play defense and rebound the scraps" than it is to create two highly-functional offensive worlds: one for when Bynum is playing and one for when he is out with injury.

This is clearly an issue to keep an eye on, assuming that Bynum isn't traded this offseason. The longer he stays healthy, the less patient he's going to be.  The situation has implosion or explosion written all over it.
Comments

Since: Nov 12, 2006
Posted on: May 12, 2011 11:38 pm
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

Is everyone certain that Shaw will run the triangle?  I mean it as an honest question,
I think there's a very good chance he won't.  The organization knows most of the pieces (outside of Bynum) run the triangle at a championship level, though, so changing might be a tough sell.  Especially with Jim Buss thinking he's a basketball guy.



Since: Mar 10, 2007
Posted on: May 12, 2011 4:29 pm
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

It doesn't matter because it is very likely that Bynum and Artest end up gone in a trade to either Orlando for Howard or New Orleans for Paul.  Though Paul doesn't make too much sense because the triangle doesn'tneed a good point guard to be successful.

It doesn't need a low-post scorer, either.  Shaq was the exception. I think all of the triangle championship teams had big men who were either excellent passers or mid-range shooters, and Shaq has always been a very underrated passer.  I don't know how Howard fits the triangle - he might pose the same offensive problems that Bynum does.

Is everyone certain that Shaw will run the triangle?  I mean it as an honest question, because I know little about him.  It just seems to me that a lot of people (including Kobe) are assuming that everything will run exactly the same way under a new coach.



Since: Nov 12, 2006
Posted on: May 12, 2011 12:58 pm
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

It's much easier to say "play defense and rebound the scraps" than it is to create two highly-functional offensive worlds: one for when Bynum is playing and one for when he is out with injury.
Don't they still have a playbook sitting around, or in a trophy case somewhere, from the Shaquille days?
Shaq was an entirely different offensive weapon than Bynum.  Shaq was an unselfish player and excellent passer out of the post - something the triangle requires from a low-post player.  Bynum doesn't have the Cartwright/Wenning type of mid-range game, Shaq's vision and willingness to pass, or Gasol's combination of the two that helped win them two championships while Bynum sat.  Bynum might reach a higher level in a more traditional offense, but as Jerry West said after the Game 4 loss, "some players just don't fit in the triangle". 
I see Bynum as a poor man's Dwight Howard - no offensive game outside of five feet and questionable basketball IQ. 

The question I have is, with Tex Winter gone years ago and Phil Jackson gone now, will the new coach change the offense completely?



Since: Nov 12, 2006
Posted on: May 12, 2011 12:49 pm
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

Bynum last year went on a 20pt, 20reb. tear that lasted almost a month before he got hurt.  the lakers were UNBEATABLE while that was going on
What are you talking about?  Bynum has had ONE twenty rebound game in his career and he's NEVER had a 20/20 game.  Maybe you're thinking of Gasol, because at least he had five 20 rebound games over the last couple of years and two of them were 20/20s.



Since: Nov 12, 2006
Posted on: May 12, 2011 12:38 pm
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

It doesn't matter because it is very likely that Bynum and Artest end up gone in a trade to either Orlando for Howard or New Orleans for Paul.  Though Paul doesn't make too much sense because the triangle doesn'tneed a good point guard to be successful.
It doesn't need a low-post scorer, either.  Shaq was the exception. I think all of the triangle championship teams had big men who were either excellent passers or mid-range shooters, and Shaq has always been a very underrated passer.  I don't know how Howard fits the triangle - he might pose the same offensive problems that Bynum does.



Since: Jul 23, 2008
Posted on: May 12, 2011 12:22 pm
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

Until Bynum can prove that he can play 77 games without getting hurt he doesn't deserve to be a top 3 offensive option.  Kobe is a selfish ball hog but he has paid his dues and won't give the youngster any free passes.  Bynum has to earn a position as an top offensive offensive option by being reliable health-wise and performance-wise over a long period of time.  Kobe wasn't GIVEN that role.  He had to earn it.

Assuming that Bynum can stay healthy for the next 10-15 years then he should become a #1 option according to his size and agility.  That is why is a valuable player now and will be for a long time, ASSUMING HE CAN STAY HEALTHY.



Since: Jul 24, 2008
Posted on: May 12, 2011 12:05 pm
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

On a side note, basketball is a game of matchups. Dallas took advantage of the matchups and the Lakers didn't. Bynum was the matchup problem for the Mavericks and instead of running the offense through him the entire series to wear down the Mavs they let Kobe shoot contested jumpers the whole time. Meanwhile, Dallas took advantage of the Lakers poor perimeter defense by having Kidd and Barea drive and kick to Dirk, Peja and Jet. It just shows how much of a figurehead coach Phil was this year and how Kobe should just be named Player-coach because it is obvious he is calling the shots there. Brian Shaw is going to be very frustrated next year.



Since: May 29, 2008
Posted on: May 12, 2011 12:03 pm
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

you mean after artest was pushing and shoving him then rooted him to get underneath???

if you think that "elbow" as you call it warranted a suspension you are as biased as they come.  The lakers didnt even think it deserved a foul as they didnt send the game tape to the league. moron.



Since: Apr 10, 2008
Posted on: May 12, 2011 12:00 pm
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

First, let me preface my statements by acknowledging that I am a life-long Laker fan and that, as a career Laker who has brough the team 5 titles, I love Kobe.  However, as a fan of the game, I observe that the one thing Kobe lacks that all-time greats like Jordan and Magic had at earlier junctures of their respective careers, is maturity.  Why, in responding to a question about Bynum's role in the offense, does Kobe have to remind everyone that "he's going to shoot the ball"?  Really Kobe??  Yeah, nobody knows that you're the number one offensive option on the team - thanks for reminding us.  Kobe devalued the impact of Shaq (to boost his own credit) when they were teammates and most of us excused that because he was so young.  But now, as veteran leader, there's no excuse for Kobe devaluing Bynum like that.  During these playoffs, Bynum displayed tremedous growth offensively.  Why, as a team leader, wouldn't you want to foster that, instead of putting a ceiling on him and telling him to "fall in line"?  Why?  Because Kobe, at the age of 32, still lacks maturity, and is more concerned about his personal legacy than the growth of the team; and lacks the perspective to see that a dominant Bynum means a better team, which ultimately will reflect better on Kobe's legacy.  Also, last I checked Kobe wasn't the head coach - somebody should remind Kobe of that and tell him to "fall in line."  Laker Nation, these next couple years are going to be very interesting.



Since: Sep 4, 2007
Posted on: May 12, 2011 11:54 am
 

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum needs to 'fall in line'

This appears to be the foreword in the book Kobe vs Shaq part II.  it really makes me question Kobes intelligence.  The game is played inside out not outside in.  You have a big, aggressive, offensive minded center in Bynum that can cause problems for every team in the leauge including Orlando.  I know he is usually injured but to say that to the press and potentially cause an issue is just not smart.  Did he learn nothing from his lost opportunity with Shaq?  How many more rings would the Lakers have right now if those 2 had stayed together?  They could have realistically had a 4 or 5 peat during this time.  Kobe is bent on being the "man" in the Lakers title runs and really doesn't seem to understand that Bynum can make it exponetially easier on him to win more titles.  I cant stand the Lakers but it pains me when I see someone or a team that could really do some great things but let pride get in the way.  Humble yourself Kobe and reap the rewards.


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