Lakers season wrap: Devin Ebanks the forgotten man
Forward Devin Ebanks won’t be back with the Lakers next season after falling far, far out of the rotation.
While former coach Mike Brown was willing to play Ebanks, in early November the third-year forward was arrested on suspicion of DUI.
From that point on, Ebanks rarely ever got off the bench -- except for a three-game stretch in December, the highlight of which was a career-best 15-point game against the New York Knicks.
Even when the Lakers were playing a skeleton crew in the postseason, Coach Mike D’Antoni didn’t turn to Ebanks.
“It’s really just the coach’s decision,” said Ebanks after his exit interview with the team. “For me it definitely was a disappointing year. Knowing how hard I worked in the summer.”
The Lakers would need to issue Ebanks a $1.3-million qualifying offer this summer to make him a restricted free agent -- but it’s safe to say they won’t.
Ebanks played a total of 63 games for the Lakers since they drafted him in 2010 with the 43rd pick.
The team hoped he’d develop into a strong perimeter defender, but other than brief flashes (notably in a Lakers’ win over the Oklahoma City Thunder last season), Ebanks didn’t show enough this year for the Lakers to continue to invest in the 23-year old forward.
“Next season, I’m probably going to look around and weigh my options as far as other teams,” he said. “I’d like to thank [General Manager] Mitch [Kupchak] and the Lakers organization for giving me the opportunity while I was here for the last three years.”
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