Philadelphia 76ers: Re-Grading the Andrew Bynum Trade Four Months Later

The Philadelphia 76ers (15-20) made a crucial trade four months ago that many hoped would change the culture of this organization. By acquiring a true center and trading away the team’s leading ball-handler, they hoped to solve their interior issues while putting the ball in the hands of rising star Jrue Holiday as often as possible. Only one of those has occurred.

Vucevic has averaged a double-double with the Magic (via Getty Images).

They traded for the 7-foot Andrew Bynum and gave away their All-Star guard Andre Iguodala and center Nikola Vucevic. These two players have made a significant impact on their teams.

Iggy is the second leading scorer (14.0 points per game) for his team and they are currently in second place in the Northwest Division. On the other hand, the 76ers are 4th in their division and are well below .500.

The leading rebounder for the Sixers is Thaddeus Young with only 7.1. Sophomore center Nikola Vucevic has averaged 10.1 rebounds per game (not to mention 11.3 points as well). The 76ers play in a very tough Atlantic Division with some elite rebounders. Having Vucevic would make a significant difference if he was healthy.

Just look at some of the stats associated with this trade. Based on this season’s production, the Sixers gave up 996 points and acquired only 319. They’ve given up 674 (in the form of Vucevic and Iguodala) and only gotten 118 (per Spike Eskin of CBS Philadelphia).

With Bynum:

When healthy he is considered to be the 2nd best center behind Dwight Howard. Last year, Bynum averaged 18.7 points and 11.8 rebounds. Not only would he make an impact in the rebounding game, but he adds another scoring threat to the Sixers’ arsenal. His point total is incredible, considering he has Kobe Bryant who is very well-known for his scoring.

Bynum’s rebounding averages are outstanding, considering he played with an elite big-man in Pau Gasol. It is scary to imagine what kind of numbers he can put up with a Sixers team that is lacking talent in areas where he strives. His presence would also open things up for the team’s perimeter shooters, who have struggled mightily due to added pressure (which has come from the lack of an inside scoring threat).

Without Bynum:

Not having Bynum has been debilitating.

The Sixers are currently 4th in their division and quite frankly if there was anyone but the Raptors in their division, they would be last. Philadelphia is currently 21st in rebounding with 41.7. Due to the fact that they do not have their dominant rebounder, they need everyone to make a contribution and it clearly isn’t working too well. Most importantly, they cannot continue to let teams crash the offensive glass. They have not been playing great defensively, so they must limit the amount of second chance points their opponent gets.

Bynum’s knee has been a major setback throughout his career. His mere presence on the court could help the Sixers collect a few wins. While in Los Angeles, he was quoted saying that Kobe Bryant “stunted his growth”. In Philadelphia, he has nothing to worry about and no more excuses. He also is playing for a contract extension, so he needs to get on the court and make a change immediately.

Overall Grade: C+

Bynum hasn’t had the chance to prove wether or not the trade was worth it, but due to the fact that he hasn’t played and we are 35 games into the season it does not seem like a wise trade. Giving away Nikola Vucevic was a terrible idea. He was a great young addition to the team and if given enough time to develop could be exactly what the Sixers need. Trading Andre Iguodala was good because it gives Jrue Holiday a bigger role on the team, but the lack of significant progress from Evan Turner makes the SF position a weakness rather than a strength on this current team.

We may have gotten Jason Richardson as well, but the man has been lackluster thus far and is at the point in his career where he is no longer a true threat.


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Categories: 76ers, Editorial

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