ESPN: Andrew Bynum has gotten big, cinematically big, to the point that when he approaches, you can’t help but do a slow pan from his toes to his head, like a dramatic movie shot. His chest and shoulders have filled out. He’s a skinny teenager no more.
The question is: Is Bynum big enough to handle the extraordinary burden placed on him, to be the man to bring the Lakers from 2008 runners-up to 2009 champions?
Bynum doesn’t sag under the expectations. He shrugs.
“I don’t think it’s putting a lot on my shoulders at all,” Bynum said. “We have a team, a caliber of team, that’s worthy and good enough to get back.”
Lakers fans already have done the math. Kobe Bryant & Co. plus Bynum in the first two months of the 2007-08 season equaled the top team in the Western Conference. Kobe & Co. plus Pau Gasol in the second half of the season equaled the Western Conference championship. Therefore, Kobe & Co. plus Gasol and Bynum should equal NBA champs, right?
The equation isn’t that simple. There are some additional facts and figures to throw in there.
For one thing, “We’ve seen Andrew play about 20 games in three seasons, and that’s about it,” coach Phil Jackson said.