Lakers' Steve Blake out 6-8 weeks

Updated: December 4, 2012, 9:54 AM ET
By Dave McMenamin | ESPNLosAngeles.com

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. -- Los Angeles Lakers guard Steve Blake will undergo laparoscopic surgery Wednesday to repair a torn abdominal muscle, the team announced Monday.

Blake is expected to miss a minimum of six to eight weeks after the surgery, which will be performed by Dr. Craig Smith.

Blake has missed the Lakers' past 10 games because of his abdominal injury, which he sustained in a game against the Detroit Pistons on Nov. 4.

The 10-year veteran averaged 5.1 points, 2.4 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.3 steals in the seven games he played this season before the injury.

"It's a big concern for me," Kobe Bryant said about Blake. "Steve and I have always played extremely well together. He's a clutch shooter, and he's a tough competitor. That's one of the things I like about him, his toughness. So, we're going to be missing a lot with him being out. I'm not sure how long he is going to be out, but I'm assuming it's going to be a while. Hopefully he can keep his head in it and come back ready to go."

Steve Nash (fractured fibula in his left leg) participated in shooting and ballhandling exercises with player development coach Phil Handy on Monday. He will travel with the team on its three-game road trip through Houston, New Orleans and Oklahoma City but is not expected to play.

"When he feels secure physically -- whether he's playing well (in practice) or not -- I think he'll come back," Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni said of Nash. "He just wants to make sure he doesn't reinjure anything. I've known him forever, and he's always playing at a high level. His mental ability to be able to pass the ball and stuff. ... He might not be at what he thinks is a high level, but it will be high for us."

D'Antoni also said that he is considering changing the starting lineup by putting Chris Duhon in for Darius Morris at point guard.

Morris has started all 10 games while Blake has been out, averaging 5.5 points and 2.6 assists while shooting 35.7 percent from the field.

"Offensively I did think that Duhon ran the team pretty well," D'Antoni said of Duhon's performance in the Lakers' 113-103 loss to the Orlando Magic on Sunday. "I thought that he had a nice flow to it in certain parts of the game."

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