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Lakers' Devin Ebanks remains a DNP

Reserve forward apparently doesn't fit into team's plans under Mike D'Antoni. He hasn't played since DUI arrest Nov. 9.

November 23, 2012|By Mike Bresnahan
  • Devin Ebanks hasn't played since his DUI arrest Nov. 9.
Devin Ebanks hasn't played since his DUI arrest Nov. 9. (Harry How / Getty Images )

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Call it the curious case of Devin Ebanks, the reserve Lakers forward who remains in a bizarre limbo.

He's not officially suspended by the team, but he's not playing either.

He did not enter Friday's game against Memphis, logging his eighth consecutive DNP since being arrested on suspicion of misdemeanor DUI in Los Angeles in the early morning of Nov. 9.

It's safe to say he has had a bad couple of weeks.

He was called into the office after the arrest to meet with Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak. Then he was held out of two games because he "was not ready to play basketball," according to a team spokesman.

Ebanks, 23, sat out the last six games because he did not fit into Coach Mike D'Antoni's plans. It could change, but for now, Ebanks is on the outside. Way outside.

"Can't do nothing about it," Ebanks said Friday. "It's a coach's decision. I've just got to keep working and stay professional. It's the way Mike D'Antoni wants to run things right now. I'm just going to be there supporting my teammates."

Normally an active Twitter contributor, Ebanks hasn't added to any of his 12,178 tweets since Nov. 8, the day before his arrest. A post on his Twitter account that afternoon encouraged his followers to celebrate a woman's birthday that night at Roxbury nightclub near Hollywood.

Ebanks was averaging 2.5 points, nothing special, but also 10.3 minutes on a team with severely underperforming reserves. He was one of the first players off the Lakers' bench and had played in four consecutive games before the arrest, including an eight-minute appearance Nov. 7 in Utah.

Ebanks stayed with the Lakers after signing a one-year, $1.4-million contract last August. His next court date is scheduled for Dec. 7.

Waiting game

Steve Nash hasn't missed this many games in a row since sitting out 22 consecutive in 1999 because of an ankle injury.

It has been dragging him down, losing all this time because of a small fracture in his lower left leg.

"I've got to get in shape whenever I can," he said. "That's something that's weighing on my mind every day that goes by."

Nash missed his 11th game Friday and won't play Saturday against Dallas. He will be re-evaluated by team doctors Monday and might undergo another MRI exam at that time.

He is allowed to do 12-minute workouts on an elliptical machine but can't do anything with a higher impact. No jogging or jumping for him.

"It flares right up right away," he said.

He knows D'Antoni's offense well after spending four years running it in Phoenix. It doesn't matter at this point. There's a mountain of work to do before he returns.

"The Pyrenees," he said, trying to smile.

mike.bresnahan@latimes.com

twitter.com/Mike_Bresnahan

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