The Lakers’ Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is expected to be at practice Saturday, but the starting shooting guard will have to navigate the conditions of his shortened probation for about the next month.
Caldwell-Pope missed Thursday night’s game in Cleveland because he had to return to California to begin an intensive 25-day program, according to people familiar with his situation who weren’t authorized to speak publicly. The program comes with travel restrictions, which could cause Caldwell-Pope to miss more games.
“We are pleased that Kentavious will now continue with his NBA season and move forward in a positive manner from this experience,” his lawyer, Jeffrey Abood, said in a statement to ESPN. Abood did not respond phone and text messages from The Times.
Caldwell-Pope was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving after being stopped at 2:52 a.m. on March 29 in Auburn Hills, Mich. Caldwell-Pope pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of allowing another person to operate his vehicle while under the influence, a misdemeanor. He was sentenced to 12 months’ probation. According to the Detroit Free Press, he was initially not allowed to leave the state during that probationary period.
Caldwell-Pope signed with the Lakers this July on a one-year deal worth about $18 million. He has averaged 14.2 points per game this season.
“I think we will have him for the next game but everything was happening real-time and we have a lot going on,” Lakers coach Luke Walton said after Thursday night’s game in Cleveland.
The Lakers will resume their schedule on Monday at home against the Golden State Warriors.
Brandon Ingram had his worst game of the season during Tuesday’s loss to the New York Knicks. The forward allowed the pain of the game to stay with him for a full day.
“It actually stayed with me until I ate dinner [Wednesday] night,” Ingram said. “I just kept going about my day, knowing the next one will be better for me and just thought about Cleveland, watching film. I try to throw it away, think and see what I can do better, and just move on to Cleveland. And try to do what I can for my teammates.”
Ingram scored 26 points against the Cavaliers on Thursday, all of them in the first three quarters, and made 10 of 15 field goals. He also notched six rebounds and six assists.
Like teammate Lonzo Ball, Ingram received some words of encouragement from LeBron James after the game. Unlike Ball, Ingram had no qualms about sharing what James told him.
“He just told me he liked the improvement, he told me to keep working and continue to do what I’ve been doing and get even better,” Ingram said. “So of course those are encouraging words and those are things I definitely will do.”
You’ll forgive Jordan Clarkson for not being interested in talk of the future or the Lakers’ promise.
Clarkson has played more games as a Laker than any other player on the roster, and he has been hearing about the future during his entire time here.
“We trying to win,” Clarkson said. “That potential [stuff], being young, all that [stuff], it can get old after a while. Know what I mean? We are trying to win games. We are definitely coming along. I think we should be doing what our potential is supposed to be expected right now.”
Follow Tania Ganguli on Twitter @taniaganguli