Backup center DJ Mbenga won’t play today in Game 1 against the Oklahoma City Thunder after undergoing emergency eye surgery Saturday night. He got cracked upside the head for the second straight day in practice, suffering a rentinal hole. Surgery was performed by Dr. Ron Gallimore. The Lakers said he would be out 72 hours, minimum. He’ll return to the doctor for a checkup on Tuesday afternoon. Andrew Bynum’s return from a 13-game absence because of a strained left Achilles tendon makes Mbenga’s absence a little less serious to the Lakers’ depth for the first two games of the series.
The list of the injured going into Game 1, with their status:
Ron Artest (sprained left thumb) will play.
Shannon Brown (sprained right thumb) will play.
Kobe Bryant (avulsion fracture, right index finger) will play.
Andrew Bynum (strained left Achilles tendon) is probable.
Jordan Farmar (strained left hamstring) is probable.
DJ Mbenga (retinal surgery, left eye) is out.
Sasha Vujacic (severe sprain, left ankle) is out.
Luke Walton (pinched nerve, back) is probable.