THE UNCERTAINTY that 76ers fans frustratingly got used to all of last season when it came to Andrew Bynum has now shifted to Cleveland. As close to an hour and a half before the game, Cavaliers head coach Mike Brown said that he wasn't sure whether Bynum would be able to go and, as is always the case, he would know more after warmups.

And then as his new teammates took the floor for pregame warm-ups, there was no Bynum. About a minute later, he trotted out from the tunnel and onto the court to join his teammates, wearing a huge smile as the boos cascaded down on him.

Bynum entered the game with 3 minutes, 38 seconds left in the first quarter to the expected chorus of boos. He handled them with the same amount of reaction he showed here all of last season, which is to say none. He played 18 minutes and collected four points and five rebounds.

At this stage in his comeback he is just a screen-setter and passer on offense, a rebounder on defense. A far cry from the player the Sixers thought he could be when they traded for him in the summer of 2012.

"My old job taught me how good he was when him and Pau [Gasol] would play quality ball with each other," Sixers coach Brett Brown said. "At 7-2 and a big man, those two would just play together so well. He required a different scheme defensively. You struggled if you just played dead behind him and let him do what he wanted to do. He's a very unique player. Every time you see him, you recognize just how big he is. In his healthy days he was legit.

"You look at over the years at the centers, and of the dominant centers, who really commands a double-team now? He was one of them. He required a double-team when he got deep catches, he was too big and too good. He had soft hands and a soft touch. A good player."

He was. Whether he ever will be again is the big question. One thing is for certain. He won't ever be welcomed in Philly.