Andrew Bynum: Philadelphia Will Have No Problem Locking Up Star Center
Andrew Bynum will be a Philadelphia 76er for well beyond the one season he is currently under contract for.
There are plenty of facts for one to reasonably come to this conclusion, but the icing on the cake came on Wednesday when Bynum was at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia to essentially make his debut as a 76er and meet the fans and press.
As it should be at this fresh point of the relationship, it came off as a love fest, but Bynum went further than he needed to with his comments, specifically with what Michael Preston, the Philadelphia 76ers Director of Public Relations, felt compelled to pass along via Twitter.
"I'm really looking forward to making this my home." - #Sixers C Andrew Bynum— Michael Preston (@preston76) August 15, 2012
Bynum had nothing but happiness and hope to express. Fox News caught more of his comments, and Bynum made sure to mention he was excited that the offense would be going through him. The Plainsboro, NJ native added, "I'm coming home."
While it can be dangerous to put too much stock into something a player says in a setting like this, it is worth mentioning that Andrew Bynum is not a player that has shown a keen interest in sugar coating.
I'm certainly inclined to take Bynum for his word here, and all of this certainly points to him being willing to sign a new contract to stay in Philly.
It's not going to be cheap for the Sixers, but Bynum is not going to leave town as long as they open up their walletbooks for a max deal, and there is every reason to think that they will.
Philadelphia had to have known that re-signing Bynum was going to take a max offer. Everyone should have known. As one of the league's top-two centers, he is going to command this kind of salary. Earlier in the summer, when the Lakers were still trying to lockdown the center position, ESPN's Dave McMenamin and Ramona Shelburne offered up this:
[The Lakers are] well aware that there will not be much wiggle room once the negotiations begin; Bynum will expect a max contract extension.
The Sixers wouldn't have traded for him if they weren't anxious to try and lock him up longterm, and their PR man wouldn't have tweeted out Bynum's excitement if they weren't equally excited. While all of these positive feelings are great, Philly has the inside track regardless.
They own his Bird rights, which means that the Sixers can sign him to a longer and more lucrative deal than any other team.
So get ready Philly fans, the Andrew Bynum era has officially begun.
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