Dear Philadelphia 76ers,
It's time to write you an open letter regarding Andrew Bynum and his future.
In particular, his future with the organization.
Now, I understand that both fans and the media speak about him on a daily basis, and that must be tiring to hear. It would be close to impossible to blame you for the way everything went down. Still though, you are forced to constantly see articles or hear rants about the subject.
Although I understand how that could get annoying and tedious, I still feel like I have to add to the never-ending pile of Bynum mail.
Here are my feelings about Bynum's future with the Sixers.
Trading for the Bynosaur seemed like a franchise-changing move at the time. Philadelphia needed a big that was able to dominate on both ends of the floor, and it felt like you ended up getting one of a handful of players that was capable of doing just that. The next step was to take it easy and wait until the year started. Waiting wasn't going to be too hard because you had something special in store for the upcoming season.
Unfortunately, waiting became incredibly difficult.
The craziest part about everything is that it felt like there was a time when waiting for Bynum to return stopped hurting. It was as if the whole world knew he wasn't coming back.
It all went down during a press conference in which half of his hair was in cornrows and the other half was still an afro. Those who know people who braid their hair are probably familiar with this step in the process, but it isn't exactly the most flattering of sights.
Bynum didn't seem to care at all.
He completely lacked any sense of a self-image. He didn't care about the team. He didn't want to get back onto the floor.
I joined him in not wanting him out there at all, either.
He just wanted to keep everyone on their toes. For them to wonder about his next ridiculous antic-filled move.
To be honest, it was an incredibly disrespectful move. One that made me lose all respect for the former great center.
It's for this reason that I personally believe signing him to another contract would be one of the Sixers' worst moves.
If Philadelphia offers him a contract, then we as fans know they choose to disregard lessons learned in favor of what could be. Well guess what Philly? "What could be" shouldn't be the main focus.
"What was" needs to be.
Had Bynum showed a respectable and honest effort in getting back onto the floor, then my feelings would be different. He could have acted up as much as he wanted to, but if it truly felt like he was trying to give something to the team then I would have been able to overlook his personality.
I'm not a staff member of any NBA franchise, but I do think of myself as a very educated man in the world of basketball. I understand that there is a chance of him one day being healthy enough to help the Sixers win games. Sure, there is even a chance that he'll get back to the player he once was.
None of those facts make me think twice, though.
Look at the past couple of NBA champions and very few of them even have one player that isn't all about his team. There might be players with personality issues, but there is no denying how much they care about the organization they play for. Even if the team does have one of those guys, then they are certainly not one of the two featured players on the team.
The bottom line is that building a team full of character issues doesn't work.
All it takes is one infected rat and it's only a matter of time before everyone is infected in some way.
Andrew Bynum hasn't even been a rollercoaster of a ride. It's been a free fall with no end.
Philadelphia, give yourselves an opportunity to find the end by not offering him a contract to remain on the team.
I believe it is in the best interest of the Sixers and their future.