Andrew Bynum: 'Got to bide time'

PHILADELPHIA -- 76ers center Andrew Bynum never thought going bowling, one of his favorite pastimes, could do damage to his knees. But he believes that's exactly what happened and it's added frustration in his struggle to get healthy.

Bynum said Sunday that his left knee swelled after he went bowling last Saturday night. He told his doctors and last Tuesday had an MRI that revealed he'd done some new damage. It was a setback because Bynum had missed the entire training camp and preseason with a bone bruise in his right knee.

"I didn't twist it or fall or nothing," Bynum said before his team took on the Cleveland Cavaliers. "It kind of broke off cartilage and it made the bone bruise bigger. Obviously (how) is the question, it's relatively nothing, it's three steps (and roll). That's the most important thing and why everyone is being so cautious. I can't answer and (doctors) can't now either, we're trying to figure out what's going on."

Bynum had recently begun some low-impact rehab work as he worked toward returning in late December or January. The Sixers, when announcing that he was able to start the early stages of rehab last Monday, felt that was the first positive news in weeks. Bynum said he didn't think bowling was any more strenuous than his rehab work.

"I don't think anybody could've told (me) I couldn't do that," Bynum said. "I was doing squatting and low-impact training. It is what it is. The cartilage is in a weakened state."

The Sixers aren't changing the timetable set for Bynum's return than before learning of the new injury. The plan remains to have him re-evaluated in three weeks and hope that he'll be cleared to return to the court. But clearly there is concern that Bynum seems to be getting worse and not better.

"It sucks; I just don't know what to expect," Bynum said. "I have an issue with my knees and we're trying to resolve it. There's no surgical procedures that will really help or are safe to do at the moment. I've just got to bide my time."

Sixers coach Doug Collins declined to add anything to Bynum's comments about the injury. Sixers general manager Tony DiLeo said last Friday that the team will continue to be patient with Bynum, looking at the long term. Bynum is in the final year of a contract that pays him $16.5 million this season.

"They're being supportive," Bynum said of his team. "Obviously in hindsight you shouldn't go bowling, but it's not more than anything I've done in my rehab."