LOS ANGELES (AP) — Steve Blake will be out at least six weeks with a torn ligament in his right elbow, leaving the Los Angeles Lakers without all three of their injured point guards.
Blake was hurt Nov. 26 in Washington, but kept playing until the Lakers' team doctors diagnosed the tear this week. He has been starting in the absence of Steve Nash and Jordan Farmar, averaging 9.8 points and 7.7 assists in a strong season.
"It's still a little bit in shock right now that I'm having another injury and having to sit out," Blake said Thursday before the Lakers' flight to Oklahoma City to open a four-game trip. "I was really enjoying the way things were going, so it is tough."
Blake's injured ligament is typically repaired by the so-called Tommy John surgery in baseball players. Blake said he won't have surgery, but will attempt to return this season with rest and platelet-rich plasma injections.
Blake played 39 minutes against Phoenix on Tuesday night, finishing with nine points and 10 assists. He has logged heavy minutes without Nash, who has been out since Nov. 10 with nerve root irritation, and Farmar, who tore his left hamstring Dec. 1.
"Three (point guards), you would think, would be plenty enough to get you through the year," Blake said. "For all of us to be out at the same time is pretty rare, I think."
Kobe Bryant, who just returned two games ago from an eight-month absence with a torn Achilles tendon, will fill in at point guard alongside Jodie Meeks. The Lakers (10-11) have fallen back below .500 after losing three of their last four, including both games with Bryant, who expressed wonder at Blake's ability to play so long with the injury.