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Wednesday's NBA Notes

Is Andrew Bynum Trade Already A Bust For 76ers?

The Philadelphia 76ers were downright giddy this offseason when they were able to be a part of the four-team trade that shipped Dwight Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers and got the Sixers the young Lakers' seven-footer Andrew Bynum. The only player Philly had to give up was Andre Iguodala, and most believed it was time for Iggy to move on. The trade was lauded for the Sixers.

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The 76ers reached the Eastern Conference semifinals last season and pushed Boston to seven games in that series. The addition of Bynum, who was to be the East's best center with Howard out West, was expected to make Philly the primary challenger to Miami and Boston in the East this year.

However, Bynum has yet to play a second for Philadelphia and now won't until at least January. Bynum has had knee problems in his career and underwent blood-spinning therapy to fortify his knees in September. However, he then suffered some sort of mysterious deep bone bruise that has kept him off the court. In his most recent visit with a specialist, Bynum was told to stay off the knee for at least one more month. Then he could need four weeks just to get into shape.

The 76ers knew of these issues when they made the trade and Bynum passed a physical. The team couldn't pass up the chance at the All-Star after he averaged 18.7 points, 11.8 rebounds and 1.9 blocks a season ago. The lockout-shortened schedule may have played a big role in Bynum's latest problems because the games were so cramped together. He averaged a career-high 35.2 minutes last regular season, almost 16% more than his previous high.

The 76ers have gotten off to a 4-3 start without Bynum. The team's 32nd game would be January 1, 2013. Perhaps ironically, it is at the Lakers. However, it seems optimistic for Bynum to be back by then. The Sixers don't want to rush him back, but they need to determine if Bynum is a good fit because he will be an unrestricted free agent after the season. Bynum declined to sign an extension when given the chance, which could cost him. Sixers ownership has said it will offer Bynum a maximum extension if he is healthy.

Philadelphia opened the season at 15/1 to win the East and 33/1 to win the NBA title, but those numbers have risen to 18/1 and 50/1. They likely will keep rising the longer Bynum sits.

Live Betting Games Available

There will be two NBA live play-by-play betting games available each night from Wednesday-Friday at the book.

The Oklahoma City Thunder appear to have gotten over the James Harden trade as they have won five straight heading into Wednesday's game against Memphis. However, the loss of Harden's offense is showing in the total as OKC is an NBA-worst 1-6-1 on the over/under.

Since an opening loss at the Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis also has won five straight, each by at least eight points. The Grizzlies had arguably the NBA's most impressive win thus far: 104-86 Sunday at home against Miami. Memphis is fifth in the NBA in scoring after finishing last season 20th and is 4-0 when scoring 100 points. The Thunder, who opened as 5.5-point favorites, won three of four against Memphis a year ago.

Also available on Wednesday is the Heat at the Clippers (-1). Miami bounced back from that Memphis loss with a 113-110 win at Houston on Monday behind 38 points from LeBron James. What is scary is that LeBron appears to be even better this season from long range. He is shooting 52% (13-for-25) from the three-point arc. LeBron also has had a career-high five straight games of at least 20 points and 10 rebounds. Expect plenty of fireworks Wednesday as Miami leads the NBA in scoring and L.A. is No. 3. The Clippers have reached 100 points in every game but one.

On Thursday, the live betting matchups are Celtics at Nets and Heat at Nuggets. It's Boston's first trip to Brooklyn and the second of a back-to-back as the C's host Utah on Wednesday. It's an incredibly tough second game in two nights for Miami as the Nuggets are one the league's most up-tempo clubs and there's always the altitude factor in Denver for visiting teams.

Finally on Friday, the NBA live games are Jazz at 76ers and Knicks at Grizzlies. Also Friday, Mike D'Antoni is set to make his Lakers head-coaching debut when L.A. hosts D'Antoni's former team, the Suns.

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