Andrew Bynum

One kid hurt, another kid cries

Warriors fans rejoiced today.

Not because they won’t have to look at Mike Dunleavy and Troy Murphy in person for another year, but because Andrew Bynum will be absent from the Lakers for eight weeks.

You don’t root for injuries, you want to beat the other team at their best, blah blah blah. There’s no way Mully and Nellie did anything other than high-five each other and say “great success” in their best Borat impersonations after finding out that perhaps the NBA’s most improved player twisted his knee so violently that his kneecap actually moved sideways.

That’s a little worrisome for the Lakers. I’d never even heard of subluxation of a knee before, and that sounds worse than an eight-week injury, even for a 20-year-old like Bynum. More likely is that in eight weeks Bynum will be planning his first full-contact practice, not playing NBA games.

Tough for the Lakers, losing the kid. Pretty much the only reason Kobe complaints have gone down to zero, Bynum did more than just help the Lakers to a 25-11 record.

Bynum reached a new category this year that few NBA players can claim: he became a Nerf Dunker.

While dunk contests, And-1 videos and SportsCenter highlights are chocked full of swingmen throwing down entertaining dunks, rare is the man who not only makes the ball look comically small but has the quickness and/or strength to go Nerf on guys.

Shaq had it for sure (not anymore), another is Yao, who does it on pure size. Watching him dunk is much like watching my friend Sheesh (5’11”, but very long – huge upside) take it to the rack, I mean doorframe. No leaping required for Yao.

Bynum took it to another level this year, especially on alley-oops – he seemed to catch and slam the ball with one hand so quickly that it looked like an optical illusion.

Along with 13 points, 10 rebounds and two blocks per game, shooting over 60% from the field and actually becoming a respectable free throw shooter, Bynum’s been a fantasy star, too.

I wonder how Raja from Raja’s Liquors in Livermore feels about the Bynum injury. When I lived in the L last year, Raja was two blocks away from my house, and Raja loved to talk Lakers basketball. Well, mostly he loved to talk crap about Bynum.

“Bynum, he’s so slow. You gotta move! You gotta move! He ain’t movin’, man.”

“Man, I don’t know about Bynum. We gotta trade him, if anybody would even take him! He’s so slow!”

I think Raja probably feels a little different now after Bynum’s injury, probably similar to a certain Dallas wide receiver when talking to the press last night about Tony Maromo.

(Tony Romo will now on be known in this space as Tony Maromo after his performance yesterday. Not because of how he threw the ball, but how he yelled at his o-line more than any quarterback since Dan Marino. Better buy some Isotoners for your boys before next film session, Tony!)

What can I say about Terrell (Hillary) Owens?

“That’s my quarterback” might be the best soundbite of the year. You knew that T.O. couldn’t let his season end prematurely without some sort of media madness, but I never thought it would be tears through Bono glasses.

Is he insane? OK, I know the answer to that one, but were these tears genuine? I think yes. Hillary Owens has shown that he is not against public crying, he cried as a Niner after catching Steve Young’s laser-beam against the Packers in the 1998 playoffs. I didn’t know why he was crying back then, either. I didn’t know if it was because the Niners had just won, or because he dropped roughly 18 passes that day before the clinching touchdown.

But then again, Hillary Owens was the only Cowboy to come out and publicly needle Maromo after the Simpson loss. At this point, does it even matter if T.O.’s tears were real or not? It was a ridiculous display of hilarious emotion about a football game and a quarterback he seems to have a crush on, even though the man producing that display probably did more to bury his quarterback than anybody this side of Perez Hilton.

See, that’s where Hillary Clinton was smart. She cried before the game was over.

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