The Cleveland Cavaliers just recently signed Andrew Bynum to a two-year deal, which is a risky move. The Cavs are paying a 7-footer, who is very injury prone, and hasn’t played in over a year. The positive side of this is that when he is healthy, Bynum is one of the best Centers in the NBA. However, it’s a huge IF that he can stay healthy, but here’s why this is the biggest high risk, high reward of the 2013 free agency year.
As you might have already heard, LeBron James can become a free agent after this season, and as expected, it’s a high-drama situation. The Miami Heat have made the NBA Finals in all three seasons with James, and have won back-to-back championships, and there’s still a chance he might leave. Right now, the three top candidates are the Heat, of course, Cavaliers and the Los Angeles Lakers, who are trying to get both James and Carmelo Anthony, along with Kobe Bryant. That makes absolutely no sense; I don’t know how that could possibly work.
It sounds crazy why LeBron would consider taking his talents back to Cleveland, but it makes a lot of sense. Kyrie Irving will certainly be the highest attraction for him, but at the end of the day, if the Cavs want LeBron back, it all depends on the newest Cavalier, Andrew Bynum. Just imagine LeBron, Irving and a 2011-12 version of Bynum, that is a lot better than a LeBron/Dwyane Wade/Chris Bosh Big Three in 2014, and it’s not even close.
It’s wishful thinking to say Bynum will be 100 percent healthy for a whole year, but if he can be there in the playoffs and for a chunk of the regular season, that’ll be enough. Bynum averaged 18 points and 11 rebounds last time he played, and that’s some pretty good numbers.
Cleveland also presents some good role players along with Bynum and Kyrie. Earl Clark, Jarret Jack, Anderson Varejao and No.1 overall pick Anthony Bennett. Varejao averaged 14 rebounds a game last year in the 25 games he played in, but he also is very injury prone. We don’t know how good Bennett will be, but worst-case scenario, he will be a good role player for the Cavs.
The Heat on the other hand present an aging roster, Wade isn’t getting any younger. Bosh is declining, and will still be Bosh, and Ray Allen might retire after this season. The Cavs will present a better team than the Heat can, and the Lakers don’t stand a chance in my opinion. Why would LeBron want to go to an old, diminishing roster with an old Kobe? Why would he want to win Kobe his sixth ring? Makes no sense.
With all that being said, if I’m LeBron James, I’m taking my talents back to Cleveland to team up with Irving and Bynum. Even if Bynum can’t stay healthy, Irving is emerging as one of the best point guards in the NBA. The last hope the Cavaliers have for a return of King James, is a healthy Andrew Bynum.