Andrew Bynum: Is Kobe Bryant Spurring on His Recent Erratic Behavior?

I've always felt this odd connection to Andrew Bynum, as many of you may feel to any superstar who is the same age as you. Both Bynum and I are 24 years old. So now that I'm an adult, it's so hard for me to understand why Bynum is acting like he is.

Granted, I'm not a professional basketball player, nor do I claim to be anything close to one, but it's an age and maturity thing. I can understand this kind of behavior from a 21-year-old Bynum who's finally coming into his own, but that's not the case this year.

Bynum is finally healthy for a whole year, he's an All-Star and having his best season ever. On average he's scoring more points, grabbing more rebounds and tossing up more assists than ever before. He's one of the top shooters in the NBA and frequently compared to Dwight Howard as the best center in the league. Even Shaq is vying for the guy. So why is he acting out?

Part of it may be a lack of guidance from his main mentor on the team: Kobe Bryant. Everyone knows that Bryant is one of the cockiest players (rightfully so) and plays with an essential chip on his shoulder. So could it be that Kobe is trying to teach that to Bynum?

In an interview earlier this year, Robert Horry, former Laker said of the Kobe/Shaq feud to (h/t PFT):

I think Phil Jackson started that feud. It happened many times that after team practice he would say, "Kobe said this about Shaq, and Shaq said that about Kobe..." We couldn't believe how could that happen, because just the day before we saw them together, jumping on one another. Phil liked it when there was conflict of some sort.

Remember in 2008 when Kobe left the court before the game was over? Phil Jackson said (via the Los Angeles Times):

I thought his mood was uplifting. I guess that's the best [word]. I think he sensed the fact that he had to be the one that brings them back in this situation, that says, "Hey, we're going to take this thing ...

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