COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ironically, shortly before Brett Brown said that Nerlens Noel was likely going to miss the season to recover from a torn ACL (see story), Cavs head coach Mike Brown talked about his sidelined center -- a name Sixers fans know all too well: Andrew Bynum.
Bynum -- as we know -- was the Sixers’ disappointment last season when he never played a game.
Now, Bynum has yet to participate in a contact practice with his new team and is sporting a short haircut with a slimmed-down frame.
Like Brett Brown with Noel, Mike Brown is willing to be patient in waiting for the return of his centerpiece.
“It has been good to have him around,” Brown said of Bynum. “It is good for our players to see a guy who has two championship rings work as hard as he has worked -- and he has worked his tail off.”
Brown said when the Cavaliers decided to sign Bynum in the summer, the veteran broke a lease on a house he had rented in Atlanta, moved to Cleveland and got right to work.
“He gets to the facility every day at 9:30 in the morning and he leaves about 2:30, and that is every day,” Brown said. “One Monday he missed because he went out of town for the weekend and stayed an extra day. I can’t ask for more than he’s been giving.”
Brown considers Bynum an excellent role model for a roster that is fairly young -- though not as young as the Sixers -- because the players see how much hard work goes into being considered one of the best at your position.
Still, Brown can’t argue it has been awhile since Bynum has shown that -- and it could even be a while longer.
“There is no timetable [for his return],” Brown said. “When the doctors feel he is ready, when the trainers feel he is ready, when he feels he is ready and I feel he is ready, then he will play. But there is no rush.”
Sitting out an entire season because of injury is no longer a foreign concept. Derrick Rose did it, Bynum did it and Noel will likely follow suit.
Getting right seems to be the new mantra as opposed to just getting back on the court.