Caldwell-Pope missed game because of travel restrictions


After the Lakers lost to the Knicks on Tuesday in New York, Caldwell-Pope flew to MI to appear before a judge, who modified his sentence to require that the Lakers starting shooting guard not leave the state of California for 25 days. The Lakers have leaned on Caldwell-Pope, 24, to provide veteran leadership, turn the Lakers' defense around and at times be the team's closer in close games. Caldwell-Pope's attorney, Jeffrey Lance Abood, did not return multiple phone calls, emails and text messages requesting clarification or a statement about Caldwell-Pope's situation. But Caldwell-Pope was not restricted from leaving MI to sign with the Lakers in July. He pleaded guilty in May to a lesser charge of allowing another individual to operate his vehicle while intoxicated. That's because, as part of the terms of his pleading guilty back in March to allowing someone to operate his vehicle while under the influence, Caldwell-Pope can not leave the state of California for the next 25 days.

Caldwell-Pope was suspended for the first two games of the season by the National Basketball Association, and Coach Luke Walton said he did not know the issue would cause the former lottery pick to miss additional games. "I just have to deal with this legal situation that came with it". "I was blessed that I am able to continue to play ball".

Caldwell-Pope is not allowed to leave the state of California while attending a rehab program, meaning he will not be able to play in Los Angeles' games in Houston (Dec. 20 and Dec. 31) and Minnesota (Jan. 1). Kentavious complied with most of the terms of his probation and he has had no further driving or other infractions since that time.

After missing the first two games of the season due to a suspension, KCP was forced to sit out of the Lakers' 121-112 away loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday.

The Lakers have 12 games remaining in the 25-day stretch where KCP's availability is in question. They'll play in Houston on the 20th and 31st, in Oakland on the 22nd and in Minneapolis on January 1.

Lakers coach Luke Walton told reporters he was not aware until last week the guard would miss any playing time. Caldwell-Pope practiced with the Lakers on Saturday and will not have any restrictions on practicing at home with the team. "But it was nice having him back with us today in practice".

After spending the first four years of his career with the Pistons, Caldwell-Pope signed a one-year contract with the Lakers over the summer. In a tight free agent market, he may once again not see offers near what he sees himself worth next summer.