By DAN GELSTON
AP Sports Writer
PHILADELPHIA — Philadelphia 76ers center Andrew Bynum will sit out three weeks as a precaution after receiving knee treatment in Germany.
Bynum had injections of plasma-rich platelets that supposedly stimulate healing in arthritis-affected areas in both of his knees. The Sixers said last week he was cleared to play in camp.
The team said Monday that Bynum also had a bone bruise on his right knee. He will continue to participate in low-impact conditioning drills.
Bynum said he felt some discomfort in the knee over the weekend and the team decided to shut down their new franchise player. He said the bone bruise was unrelated to the knee treatment.
“I’m going to do everything in my power to get back,” Bynum said.
The Sixers open the regular season Oct. 31. Bynum would have about a week between his scheduled return and the opener.
“At this point, I just need to go out and work on my craft,” Bynum said. “I should still be able to do that, even with being shut down.”
The Sixers acquired Bynum from the Lakers in a four-team deal that saw them ship Andre Iguodala to Denver. He is set to make $16.1 million this season in the final year of his contract.
Bynum was expected to soon help the Sixers win their first championship since 1983. Only 24, the New Jersey native won two championships with the Lakers.
Bynum is coming off his best NBA season after averaging career highs with 18.7 points and 11.8 rebounds while making his first All-Star team, starting for the West. He was the NBA’s third-leading rebounder and 20th-leading scorer, while also ranking sixth in the league with 1.93 blocked shots per game.
Bynum also avoided the injuries that have dogged him throughout a seven-year career since the Lakers made him the youngest player ever drafted in 2005. Bynum played in 60 of the Lakers’ 66 regular-season games, missing four due to suspension.
He said this current knee ailment isn’t as bad as the issues that have dogged him in the past.
“I feel a lot better,” he said. “The (treatment) is definitely working.”
Bynum said doctors advised he have the knee treatment — called Orthokine — closer to the season for maximum effectiveness. Bynum said he had the injections during the third week in September.
Knicks Camp: No Lin
GREENBURGH, N.Y. — Jeremy Lin was all the talk in New York during a sensational stretch last season.
Now, the Knicks don’t want to talk about him at all.
At their annual media day, the Knicks tried to keep the focus on the aging team they assembled and believe is a contender, rather than on the phenom they let get away over the summer.
Team officials had never commented on the decision not to match the offer sheet Lin signed with the Houston Rockets in July, and it took only two questions Monday before general manager Glen Grunwald and coach Mike Woodson were asked for an explanation.
“Well, sure,” Grunwald started, before Woodson, seated to his left at a podium, quickly interrupted.
“I’m not going to discuss Jeremy Lin,” Woodson said. “I think as a franchise we wish Jeremy nothing but the best. It was a process that we went through, and we were able to get a player by the name of Raymond Felton, a guy by the name of Jason Kidd, Pablo (Prigioni) in here. Three solid point guards that I think will help our ballclub as we move down the road.
“As an organization and as a coach, I wish Jeremy nothing but the best. This day really is about, I think, the team that we fielded this summer, and we need to focus in on that.”
That Lin wouldn’t be a part of it would have been unfathomable in the spring.
Undrafted out of Harvard and waived three times before the Knicks signed him, Lin finally got his chance in February with the team faltering. He averaged 24.6 points and 9.2 assists in 10 games from Feb. 4-20, pulling the Knicks into the playoff race, drawing worldwide interest as the NBA’s first American-born player of Chinese or Taiwanese decent, and boosting the Knicks’ TV ratings and merchandise sales.
His numbers declined after Woodson replaced the more offensive-minded Mike D’Antoni in March, and his season ended after just 25 starts when he needed surgery to repair torn knee cartilage. Still, Woodson had insisted Lin would return and go into next season as the starting point guard, even after the restricted free agent had signed an offer sheet with the Rockets for four years and about $28 million.
The Rockets amended the offer to three years and about $25 million, with the final year salary ballooning to nearly $15 million. In the meantime, the Knicks had signed Kidd, re-acquired Felton from Portland, and decided to pass on Lin.
“Basically, it comes down to the fact that Houston made a commitment to him that we weren’t prepared to make,” Grunwald said. “I’m very happy for Jeremy that things worked out for him very well personally and for his family, and I wish him the best. But I’m more excited for our team, by the team we’ve assembled right now.”
Bobcats’ new slogan
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Michael Jordan’s Bobcats have a new marketing slogan this season: “Tougher, Faster, Stronger.”
New coach Mike Dunlap knows his team will need to be all of that and more if the Bobcats hope to be bounce back from a disastrous 7-59 season — the worst winning percentage (.106) in NBA history — in which they lost 20 games by at least 20 points.
Dunlap, who has brought a hands-on, no-nonsense approach, believes Charlotte has enough talent to be competitive but said his team may need to play an unorthodox style to keep up with the NBA’s best teams like Miami, Oklahoma City and Boston.
To Dunlap that means playing an up-tempo style game and using his team’s young legs to his advantage.
While a lot of NBA teams run pick and rolls off what are referred to as “static sets” on offense — where players set up in certain spots and run off that formation — Dunlap said that system won’t fly with his team.
“We’re not good enough to do that,” Dunlap said during the Bobcats media day. “We have to go into the pick and roll game on the move so that we keep the defense moving. A lot of time the older players in the NBA don’t like a cutting offense to deal with. They have to drop and see ball and man and do all of these things and the have to move.
“The point is our talent is good enough to be competitive both offensively and defensively but we have to bring a different package to the NBA because we don’t have that kind of talent where we can sit them on their spots and allow our opponents to rest. We have to go after them in a fitness way and I believe we can do that, especially with what management has done with youth. They’ve given us a lot of young legs and I’m here to use those legs.”
Dunlap also said the Bobcats plan to play a disruptive, pressure-style defense.
“We want to be a hard scout for teams,” he said.
That’s one of the reasons Dunlap and his staff have had players working overtime on their conditioning and he said almost everyone on the roster will be in good shape when they arrive at training camp Tuesday in UNC-Asheville.
Of course, being in shape and being talented are two different things.
The big question remains as to whether the Bobcats actually added enough talent this offseason to compete with some of the better teams in the league.