76ers' Andrew Bynum has more lubrication injections in knees
The 76ers say that Andrew Bynum keeps progressing, although his most strenuous tests clearly lie ahead.
Bynum, who has yet to play this season after being acquired in a four-team trade in the offseason, was in New York on Thursday to receive previously scheduled Synvisc-One injections in both knees from orthopedist David Altchek.
Synvisc-One is a joint lubricant that provides relief. Bynum has received these injections before.
Months ago, Bynum mentioned that he had planned to receive the injections around the all-star break. The NBA All-Star Game is Feb. 17.
The 76ers said that they expect the center to return to rehabilitation and basketball-related activities possibly as soon as Sunday.
After Thursday's light team workout at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, coach Doug Collins was upbeat about Bynum's progress.
"I think he's feeling better," Collins said. "The one thing we have to understand is that he is not all of a sudden jumping into five-on-five scrimmages."
There is a simple reason for the caution.
"He has not done anything laterally or impact-wise, so he is going to have to do that," Collins said. "At some point in time, hopefully, he will be able to play one-on-one in the post and build from that."
Bynum has mentioned the possibility of returning around the all-star break, but nothing is concrete.
Collins said he makes a point to ask all his players how they are feeling, and the coach insists Bynum won't be put on the court until he is comfortable.
The Sixers are 19-26 and entered Thursday three games out of the eighth and final Eastern Conference playoff spot, held by the Boston Celtics.
Collins said that with a healthy Bynum he thought the Sixers could have won 60 percent of their games.
"I know he is feeling better, and I am excited about that and hope we can win games," Collins said. "If and when he comes back, we [hope to] put something together."
Guard Jason Richardson was in Vail, Colo., Thursday visiting knee specialist Richard Steadman. Richardson was receiving a second opinion on his left knee, which has caused him to miss the last five games. He had fluid drained from the knee Jan. 17 and played 27 minutes the next day against Toronto. That was his last appearance.
Sixers forward Damien Wilkins, who missed Wednesday's 92-84 win over Washington for personal reasons, wasn't at practice Thursday for the same reasons.
Two in a row
The Sixers will look to win consecutive games for the first time in more than two months when they host the Sacramento Kings on Friday.
On Nov. 30 at Charlotte, the Sixers won their third in a row, 104-98. Since then, they have won single games on nine occasions.
"If we are going to be a playoff team, you have to [win consecutive games] at some point of time," Collins said. "The difference between us and the Celtics is they won six in a row."
Contact Marc Narducci at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow on Twitter @sjnard.