Friday, March 4, 2011
Updated: March 5, 3:29 AM ET
Devin Ebanks out at least 3 weeks
By Dave McMenamin
EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Los Angeles Lakers
rookie forward Devin Ebanks has a stress fracture on his left tibia and will miss a minimum of three weeks, according to the team.
Ebanks suffered the injury almost a month ago, Feb. 6 in Memphis, and may have aggravated it Feb. 10 in Boston when landing on the floor after dunking a ball during shootaround.
"It was just an accident," Ebanks said before the Lakers played the Charlotte Bobcats on Friday. "I fell into some chairs shooting. We were playing in a 3-on-3 game when I stepped back and fell into some chairs pretty awkwardly. ... It was a freak accident."
Ebanks said he could feel the injury over the past several weeks but was able to play through it before the pain became unbearable at practice Thursday.
"It's very noticeable when I play but it wasn't enough where I had to sit out," Ebanks said. "Yesterday in practice, I couldn't run and jump like I usually do so that was a problem for me. ... I was limping running down the court."
Said Lakers head coach Phil Jackson: "At shootaround he dunked a ball, came down and had some issues with that leg. It went away, it didn't bother him as much, but it resurfaced recently and some diagnostic tests kind of gave us an indication he probably has to sit for a little bit."
Ebanks was able to shoot free throws before Friday's game but was limited to "no movement" while on the court.
Ebanks does not plan on having surgery on the leg to correct the fracture.
"It will be a rest more than anything else," Jackson said.
Added Ebanks: "Just a lot of icing and staying off my feet. That's about it."
Ebanks, a second-round draft pick out of West Virginia, is averaging 3.1 points, 1.4 rebounds and 5.9 minutes in 20 games played this season. The 6-foot-9 forward had four points and two rebounds in seven minutes of playing time in his most recent game action Feb. 25 against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Dave McMenamin covers the Lakers for ESPNLosAngeles.com. Follow him on Twitter.