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Lakers' Andrew Bynum wants to play in three weeks

Center says it's not a target, just a personal goal for return from knee surgery.

November 27, 2010|By Broderick Turner

Lakers center Andrew Bynum, still recovering from right knee surgery, has set his own timetable for when he wants to play in a game.

"Realistically, I'm looking at three weeks," Bynum said after he increased his practice load Saturday. "That's just me, what I want. The training staff and other people may see things different. Why so? I'm not sure."

That's because the last time the Lakers gave a date in which the team had hoped Bynum would return was around Dec. 10, when Los Angeles starts a six-game trip in Chicago.

Three weeks from now would be the Lakers' last game of the trip, in Toronto on Dec. 19. They return home to play Milwaukee on Dec. 21 and then play again on Christmas Day against the Miami Heat at Staples Center.

Somewhere around that time, Bynum, who had arthroscopic surgery in July to repair a torn ligament in his knee, wants to be back on the court playing.

He wants to try some three-on-three practices to see how that goes.

"I don't have a target," Bynum said. "I just want to be back within three weeks. That's my personal goal. It may or may not happen."

Bynum increased his activity Saturday, doing more physical drills. He worked in the low post against rookie Derrick Caracter, offensively and defensively.

At times, it was a physical one-on-one encounter.

Caracter banged Bynum, who banged back.

Assistant coaches Brian Shaw and Chuck Person, who had worked on the court with Bynum in Salt Lake City on Friday night, fed the ball to Bynum.

When Bynum was done with a session, he would run sprints and then go back to his workouts against Caracter.

Bynum said he felt good testing himself against the 6-foot-9, 275-pound Caracter.

"They [the coaches] are not trying to rush it," Bynum said. "I want to get back probably more than they want me back at this point, because they want me to be healthy. That's a good thing for me. I'm just going to keep trying to get back."

Bynum said he hasn't had any swelling, "which is good." He said, "obviously the true test" will come when he finally plays in a game.

Meanwhile, Bynum is trying to get 100% healthy.

"I'm having a little pinch every now and again," Bynum said. "That's what it is, where it's at. It's not like it's going to get any worse. So that's why I'm taking my time, getting myself strong, getting my wind back. I'm not rushing. I'm trying to keep myself in that mind-set, not wanting to get back and hurt myself."

broderick.turner@latimes.com

twitter.com/BA_Turner

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