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Andrew Bynum can relate to Metta World Peace's suspension

April 25, 2012|By Melissa Rohlin
  • Lakers center Andrew Bynum, left, is fouled by Denver's Corey Brewer while grabbing a rebound during a game on April 13 at Staples Center.
Lakers center Andrew Bynum, left, is fouled by Denver's Corey Brewer… (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles…)

Perhaps there's no Laker who can better understand what Metta World Peace is going through than Andrew Bynum.

"It sucks," Bynum said of World Peace's suspension. "But at the same time, it was a wild play, so I've been a victim of that and I lost five games."

Bynum was referring to an incident that happened a little over a year ago.

It was Game 4 of the second round of the NBA playoffs. The Lakers, who were expected by many to three-peat, were minutes away from being swept out of the postseason by the Dallas Mavericks.

Bynum lost it.

The 7-foot center dealt the Mavericks' Jose Barea, a 6-foot guard,  an elbow to the chest while Barea was airborne.  Barea fell to the floor, writhing in pain.

Bynum was immediately ejected. He then took off his jersey as he walked toward the locker room, an act that was perceived as thuggish and provocative.

The Lakers center received a five-game suspension without pay and was fined $25,000 for removing his jersey.

Flash forward to Wednesday afternoon.

When Bynum was asked for his thoughts on World Peace's suspension, he mostly lamented its timing.

"It just sucks that his happened in the postseason," Bynum said.

World Peace was given a seven-game suspension Tuesday for elbowing James Harden in the head while exulting over a dunk in the Lakers' game Sunday against Oklahoma City. After delivering the blow, World Peace assumed a boxer's stance as Serge Ibaka and Kevin Durant stepped toward him.

World Peace will miss his team's final regular-season game Thursday in Sacramento and could be sidelined for six potential playoff games -- if the Lakers last that long.

World Peace averaged 13.3 points and four rebounds over the last 10 games, providing the Lakers with a much-needed offensive spark.

"It's going to be tough," Bynum said of playing without him. "He's a defensive stopper for us and he can also wreak havoc on the offensive boards and on the block.

"We're going to have to find a different way to be effective in that position."

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