The exasperation of Andrew Bynum (Kobe/Shaq Beef Round 2)

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 6 years ago '07        #1
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joshdogg26 193 heat pts193
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The exasperation of Andrew Bynum (Kobe/Shaq Beef Round 2)
 

 

The exasperation of Andrew Bynum


May, 4, 2012
By Henry Abbott
ESPN.com


[pic - click to view]


Nobody who scores as easily as Andrew Bynum gets the ball so seldom.

With 54.3 seconds left in the Lakers' Game 2 win over the Nuggets, Kobe Bryant was looking to inbound the basketball.

Andrew Bynum put his butt into skinny Nugget JaVale McGee and won lovely position in the paint, a bounce pass away from Bryant.

A close examination of the game tape reveals that, up to that point, Bynum had caught the ball that close to the hoop 11 times. He had scored 10 times, the only miss coming when he lofted a shot perhaps only the freakishly long and athletic McGee could have blocked. (Add in Bynum's other, tougher shots -- some tricky spin moves after catching the ball far from the hoop, a turnaround jumper with a short shot clock -- and Bynum still finished, as usual, with the Lakers' best field goal percentage, hitting 60 percent.)

Getting the ball to Bynum with a foot in the paint, against the Nuggets, might be the best offensive option any team has in these playoffs, and there he was.

Bynum raised an arm, a 7-foot target, waving and calling for the ball. But, perhaps wanting to burn clock in the name of protecting the Lakers' six-point lead, Bryant looked elsewhere.

Bynum retreated to the corner. Ramon Sessions dribbled off the excess seconds. Then the big man tried again, this time with even more conviction, and got open again. With about 45 seconds left in the game. It was perfect, for an instant: deadly proximity to the hoop and an easy passing lane for Sessions. Bynum barked for the ball.

Sessions hesitated.

Then, oddly, Gasol -- the Laker most sensitive to Bynum's value around the rim, and the player who makes the biggest effort to get him the ball where he can use it -- cut to the hoop, bringing the frenetic defender Kenneth Faried into Bynum's orbit.

Sessions' pass was nearly impossible now. The moment had passed. Bynum had to clear out of the paint, which he did while swinging his long arm like a steamed John McEnroe would a tennis racket.

It was one of the most obvious "dammit" moments of the NBA season.

*****

Harvard Business School's Teresa Amabile and psychologist Steven Kramer have researched what makes people miserable at work, and wrote this for The Washington Post:

Over the past 15 years, we have studied what makes people happy and engaged at work. In discovering the answer, we also learned a lot about misery at work. ...

What we discovered is that the key factor you can use to make employees miserable on the job is to simply keep them from making the progress they expect to make in meaningful work.

People want to make a valuable contribution, and feel great when they make progress toward doing so.


*****

Andrew Bynum leads the league in looking exasperated. He is often seen as childish because of it. What's one lost chance? Nothing, really. The thing that happened to Bynum on that play happens to everybody. Grow up, kid.

But what happened on that play happens to Bynum a lot.

There was a play with 7:20 left in the first quarter where Bynum was set up in the k!ll zone, where he essentially didn't miss all night. Two Lakers skipped clear opportunities to get him the ball. Bynum capped that episode with his palms to the sky, begging for answers.

Minutes later, he picked for Bryant on the right side. Both defenders stayed glued to the living embodiment of the term "shooting guard." Uncovered, Bynum rolled to the hoop smelling a dunk. But he never got the ball. Even sandwiched between Arron Afflalo and McGee, Bryant fired away, drawing a foul. Alone at the rim, Bynum jumped to catch Bryant's shot, perhaps thinking it was a pass. After it fell through the net, Lakers ran to congratulate Bryant on the and-one. Bynum hung his head.

With 6:28 left in the game, Bryant drove hard to the hoop, drawing a crowd, and forced up a difficult, off-balance reverse layup that missed badly. Meanwhile, Bynum was standing right in front of Bryant, a yard from the rim, open. A few minutes later, Bynum posted up early in the possession, but didn't get the ball and was then doubled. He spun away from the double-team to the hoop, finding plenty of open space. A well-timed lob would have been deadly. Instead, Bryant shot a long, contested 3, which missed.

In the locker room after the game, ESPNLosAngeles.com's Arash Markazi noted that despite the win, Bynum didn't seem happy: "I left a lot on the court today," the center explained. "I worked way too hard before the game to let that happen. I could have had a perfect game. ... I left a lot of things out there tonight."

Maybe he was critiquing himself, but this is the tack Bynum often takes when he's frustrated -- he blames himself to keep the peace. But the nonverbal messages he sent during the game spoke more loudly.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Bryant and Bynum have never had the easiest of relationships -- at times both have struggled to honor the player code to keep it in the family, and not to trash a teammate in the media. In 2007, angling for a trade, Bryant was famously caught on video in an expletive-laden tirade calling, mainly, for the Lakers to ditch Bynum.

There have been highs and lows ever since. The story is that they are in a good place now, comparatively. The worst parts of their relationship are said to now be water under the bridge. But close to the heart of a relationship between these two bucket-hungry stars is the desire to get the rock.

Bryant says he and Bynum forged a friendship over All-Star Weekend. As it happens, at the tail end of that weekend, late Sunday evening, I asked Bynum why so many Lakers games end with one of the team's least efficient plays -- a Bryant isolation. He looked glum, shrugged, and said, "I don't know, man." Then he added: "Because some guys get paid big bucks to hit shots, so that's what they've got to do."

Meanwhile, it's a cinch to make the case Bynum is at the top of the list of Lakers who need the ball more, as many have noted. This season, Andrew Bynum's player efficiency rating -- an all-purpose summary of box score contributions -- was tied for 10th in the league, similar to reigning MVP Derrick Rose's. That's substantially better than Bryant's. Moreover, Bynum's true shooting percentage dwarfed that of Bryant, who finished tied for 160th in shooting efficiency.

These days it's commonplace to hear Bynum called the best offensive center in the game -- perhaps even the best overall, given Dwight Howard's fall from grace.

On most teams, a player of that description would have the ball constantly.

And yet, Bynum doesn't get the ball much. Bryant finished the season with the league's highest usage rate -- Bynum is 79th. No other player in the top 20 of PER has a usage rate so low.

(A similar tale plays out in New York, where another famously irate player, Amare Stoudemire, had the league's 56th-highest usage rate, despite being a more efficient option than Carmelo Anthony, who was sixth league-wide in usage.)

The disparity gets worse as the game goes on. No player hogs the ball like Bryant does in crunch time, and that's precisely the time in the game when it's toughest for the Lakers' center to get a touch. In the first half, Bynum's usage rate is 24, in the second half it falls 19.3 -- that's Nikola Pekovic territory. In overtime it falls further, to a Kris Humphries-like 17.

In his prime, Shaquille O'Neal's usage rate was consistently over 30. Even though he now shoots far less, Tim Duncan still sports a career average usage rate of 27.7.

In the second half, Bynum shoots less than once for every three minutes he plays. Bryant shoots twice as often. NBA.com's advanced stats tool tells us that in the last minute of games within five points, Bryant's usage rate this season was 65.3, compared to Bynum's 19.4. In other words, for every late possession that Bynum uses, Bryant uses three and then some.


Which means that Bynum is very often a crunch-time spectator -- whether he f!ghts for position or not, he's unlikely to catch a pass. This is despite the fact that Bynum's scoring efficiency gets only better as the game goes on: His true shooting percentage and effective field goal percentage both peak in the fourth quarter, likely because he gets the ball in that time of the game -- maybe -- only if conditions are perfect.

Surely just about every player envisions great things for himself, and Bynum is clearly no exception. So imagine how the center for the world's most glamorous team -- a franchise with a particularly rich history of all-world centers -- feels about being the best player in the world not to get the ball.

Bynum knows he has already put in the work to do incredibly special and rare things on the basketball court. He has dunked on Shaq and been mentored by Kareem. He has been coached by Phil and won two titles. He knows he could be the star of Lakers highlights, hitting game winners. He knows the Lakers can win even more games than they do. If only he got to do his thing.

So if those 15 years of work by the Harvard researchers tell us anything, they tell us that frustration is inevitable if you are a talented big man for the Lakers in this era.

Indeed, Bynum looks upset at work an awful lot. He acts out in a way that the closest Lakers observers say is a sign of his frustration that he's not allowed to do his thing. Some see that as a sign of the degree to which he just doesn't get it.

But it could also be the opposite -- a sign of just how well he does get it.

[pic - click to view]





[pic - click to view]

 The exasperation of Andrew Bynum - TrueHoop Blog - ESPN

crazy how bynum and kobe have almost the same age difference as kobe and shaq and these issues are starting to manifest at a similar age with bynum coming into his own and kobe's prime ending. now kobe has been in both positions and is not handling either one very well. this thread should be good to weed out kobe stans from laker fans.


Last edited by joshdogg26; 05-05-2012 at 03:43 PM..

46 comments for "The exasperation of Andrew Bynum (Kobe/Shaq Beef Round 2)"

 6 years ago '08        #2
GrownmanJ 21 heat pts21
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Heat fans love creating LA LA Land threads, nothing new...
 6 years ago '07        #3
joshdogg26 193 heat pts193 OP
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 joshdogg26 said:
this thread should be good to weed out kobe stans from laker fans.
 GrownmanJ said:
Heat fans love creating LA LA Land threads, nothing new...
first victim
 6 years ago '04        #4
A.G 27 heat pts27
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Henry Abbot...

Won't even bother to read his sh*tty excuse for journalism.

He has no insight whatsoever. Armchair body language "experts" and revisionists are the worst type of sports writers.
 6 years ago '09        #5
TriniSoldier 64 heat pts64
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Bynum is the future
 6 years ago '06        #6
raw51188 3 heat pts
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i cant trust bynum wont loose the ball. he fu*king sucks in the double team. THATS why he doesn't get it in crunch time. Id rather see pau with the ball.

laker crunch time should be the same play, everytime: KOBE and PAU two man pick and roll game. Period.
 6 years ago '05        #7
astroblack9 4 heat pts
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Really Josh
 6 years ago '12        #8
Fearless Genius 72 heat pts72
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abbott has a history of being dishonest and has biased views towards kobe. he hides behind numbers in order to characterize his arguments as being "objective". stats 101: just because you quote numbers doesn't mean you are being objective. the guy is a douche and this is a really good article that exposes his tactics and his bias towards kobe.



He picks and chooses data from throughout Kobe's entire career that suit his argument, and is ignorant of, or chooses to disregard, any piece of evidence counter to his theory. He accuses fans, players and GMs of remembering Kobe's greatness in our hearts and letting it cloud our judgment, but how is that different from the system he has displayed to make his entire case? Actually, there is one rather large difference. We make that mistake because we forget. He makes it by choice.

That, my friends, is a hypocrite.

The real truth

The truth about Kobe Bryant in crunch time is that there is no truth. Kobe Bryant is not perfect, far from it. Even as I'm willing to sing his praises, he still goes through periods that leave me frustrated with him, for all the same reasons that Abbott uses to attack him

He spends over 2500 words trying to convince you that Kobe Bryant is a selfish ballhog who is not very successful in crunch time situations. Three years ago, he might have been right. He uses numbers that appear convincing, because he ignores any numbers that don't fit his argument. And he has the audacity at the end to say that any open mind is forced to acknowledge his argument based on the numbers. In the end, the piece is a much more accurate reflection of Henry Abbott than it is of Kobe Bryant.

Is Kobe the best clutch player in the league? It seems that he's certainly in the conversation, but that's all it is, a conversation. That conversation will continue to evolve. Based on the numbers that I've produced, I think I've shown that Kobe Bryant continues to evolve. The only thing not evolving is Abbott's opinion of Bryant.

As long as your mind is open to all that, it has to be closed to the idea that Henry Abbott is capable of objectivity towards Kobe Bryant.




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Last edited by Fearless Genius; 07-13-2012 at 02:01 PM..
 6 years ago '05        #9
TheT 21 heat pts21
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This was garbage a few days ago when I read it and it's still garbage now.

I think Abbot, Simmons, dude from BDL and as a special guest Hollinger beccause of his ridiculous stats. Should all get together and write the ultimate Kobe hate article. That way maybe they'll finally get all of the hate they have stored out and let this mans nuts go.
 6 years ago '06        #10
Storchaveli 94 heat pts94
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 A.G said:
Henry Abbot...

Won't even bother to read his sh*tty excuse for journalism.

He has no insight whatsoever. Armchair body language "experts" and revisionists are the worst type of sports writers.
Is there a writer you DO like? Look at the NUMBERS he presents.
 6 years ago '04        #11
A.G 27 heat pts27
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 Storchaveli said:




Is there a writer you DO like? Look at the NUMBERS he presents.
Sure,

Chris Mannix, Jack McCallum, Chris Ballard, Sam Amick, Adrian Wojnarowski, Mark Spears, David Aldridge, sometimes Bill Simmons, Marc Stein, etc..

And the "numbers" he presents are just that.

Bynum doesn't get to the line much and doesn't pass the ball out of the post. His usage rating is obviously going to be lower because those parts of his game are not prominent compared to most of the "stars" in the league. Dude is essentially on offense a player you dump the ball into the post for and just wait for him to either miss or score.

Tell me how that's conducive to a high usage value..
 6 years ago '08        #12
slimdogg3325 1 heat pts
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does anybody make up their own mind anymore
 6 years ago '09        #13
The Bully 352 heat pts352
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kobe stans won't like this one, josh. nope, they won't like this one bit
 6 years ago '11        #14
Kobane 163 heat pts163
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Shaq v. Kobe 2.0 , Josh you getting the Laker stans blood boiling. Dont do it to em





They dont wanna read this
 6 years ago '11        #15
Dray 1187 heat pts1187
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good read but if this thread was before game 3 I would 100% agree but in game 3 he just showed his immaturity (shows alot what if he does dumb sh*t during crunch time..) and kobe and barnes had to calm him down many times in game 3,he almost went crazy on refs it was that bad..calm down so mcgee caught a block near the basket..

whens hes hot pass him the rock

when hes not let him bobble and bop
 6 years ago '07        #16
Bkjj11 3550 heat pts3550
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Lakers lost to get back metta. Stfu
 05-06-2012, 08:41 AM         #17
Cowboys All Day 
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Andrew Bynum put his skinny Nugget into JaVale McGee's butt and won lovely position in the paint, a bounce pass away from Bryant.

 6 years ago '06        #18
philly337 20 heat pts20
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 Bkjj11 said:
Lakers lost to get back metta. Stfu
Take ur fu*king a.ss on you coward...

You said you'd leave bx get the fu*k gone
 6 years ago '09        #19
The Bully 352 heat pts352
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joshGODD the propet
 6 years ago '06        #20
Icee 33 heat pts33
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I'm a Lakers fan, and this article is true. LAKERS win when they establish the inside game with Drew and Pau!
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