The failure of Cleveland’s Andrew Bynum experiment has dominated headlines this weekend across the NBA, but while the Cavs have their share of problems, so do most of their rivals in the Central Division. Only the Pacers, with a 24-5 record that’s tied for the league’s best, are any better than four games beneath .500. We’ll pass along a couple of takes on Bynum here amid a larger look at the Central:
- The tension between Josh Smith and Pistons coach Maurice Cheeks that led to Smith’s benching for the second half last night is an ominous sign for the team, as Vincent Goodwill of the Detroit News examines.
- Chris Copeland sought the counsel of his then-Knicks teammates as he contemplated his free agency last summer, and Jason Kidd was particularly helpful, Copeland tells Candace Buckner of the Indianapolis Star. The Pacers forward is confident that Kidd, who’s struggling in his first year as coach of the Nets, has the leadership ability to do the job.
- The Pacers have assigned Solomon Hill to the D-League, the team announced. Hill says via Twitter that he asked for the assignment (hat tip to Buckner). Coach Frank Vogel has said that the team didn’t have plans to send Hill down, but the rookie guard has been on the inactive list since Danny Granger returned from injury, Buckner notes (All Twitter links).
- None of the moves the Cavaliers made this past offseason have worked out, including the Bynum signing, and that doesn’t bode well for the franchise after one of the most important summers in its history, opines Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal.
- Bleacher Report’s Kevin Ding argues that Bynum’s free-spirited personality will keep him from once more overcoming his creaky knees and becoming the All-Star he once was, and Ding imparts some of the blame on coach Mike Brown.