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Lakers expect Derrick Caracter to miss 4-6 weeks

Derrick CaracterAfter having surgery that removed part of a torn lateral meniscus in his left knee, Lakers forward Derrick Caracter is expected to sit out for at least four to six weeks.

Should the Lakers' initial timetable hold up, Caracter would remain sidelined between 11 and 18 games. According to the timetable, Caracter would return anywhere between Jan. 11 and Jan 25.

Caracter, who suffered the injury in Monday's practice, played a pretty modest role last season, averaging only two points on 5.2 minutes per game in 41 contests. But his absence only further diminishes the Lakers' frontcourt depth. Center Andrew Bynum faces a five-game suspension to open the season because of his forearm shove against Dallas guard J.J. Barea in last season's playoffs. The Lakers also recently traded Lamar Odom and a second-round draft pick to the Dallas Mavericks for a first-round pick and a $8.9-million trade exception.

To mitigate the damage, the Lakers signed free-agent forward Josh McRoberts by using the entirety of their mini mid-level exception. The Lakers kept Caracter this year through a $788,872 contract, but it's a non-guaranteed contract.


Lakers Report Cards: Derrick Caracter

Five things Derrick Caracter needs for a successful season

— Mark Medina

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Photo: Derrick Caracter was little used by the Lakers last season despite the need for a bruising big man. Credit:  Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times

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