Andrew Bynum: 'I'm definitely playing tomorrow'
“I’m definitely playing tomorrow,” said the Lakers’ center, who has not see game action since undergoing knee surgery last July.
The Lakers, on a 9-7 skid after winning their first eight games, have been waiting for Bynum to return, though there was no timetable for how many minutes he might play Tuesday against Washington.
“I don’t know how long," he said Monday after practicing with teammates before they met with President Obama. "The practice felt very good. Obviously I’m not myself yet, but I can definitely go out there and help the team, and I’m going to go do that.”
Lakers Coach Phil Jackson said Bynum might play only about 15 minutes. Jackson had repeatedly said that the big center would start in his first game, but changed his mind after conferring with Lakers' trainers. Bynum will determine whether he starts or comes off the bench, Jackson said.
“We’ll just live with what happens,” Jackson said. “It may hurt the team, but we’re willing to do that at this point. It’s a big effect for us, hopefully.”
Bynum averaged 15 points and 8.3 rebounds in 30.4 minutes a game last season.
Pau Gasol, who moved from power forward to center while Bynum was out and had worn down in recent games, seemed happy that Bynum would return.
"We’ve been pretty short-handed as far as rotation on the interior game," Gasol said. "For 20-some games, it’s been that way. It’s a difference when you have somebody like Andrew in the rotation.”
The Lakers met with Obama for a second consecutive season, part of their reward for winning the last two NBA championships.
-- Mike Bresnahan, reporting from Washington, D.C.
Photo: Andrew Bynum works out with a knee brace Dec. 12. Credit: Kirby Lee / US Presswire