So theres no need to allow gassing off during lagering? I'm still a little foggy on just what exactly is happening during lagering. If the yeast are still somewhat active, whether it is better for the beer to be able to "breathe", etc. If its just a matter of letting the beer drop clear in cold storage, then I think kegs or bottles could be lagered and you could carbonate first.
I'm lagering some bottled/conditioned beer right now. Four weeks in the fridge at 35F before I take it to a Cinco de Mayo party.
It depends on how well the beer has been fermented.
If you control temperatures well early, then give the beer a bit of well-timed warm conditioning to clean up the last of the diacetyl and acetaldehyde and blow off any sulfur, then a well-behaved yeast should be clean by the end of about 3 weeks of fermentation. Then you really only need to drop the yeast. When I use WLP830, I usually only lager for the 2 or 3 weeks that it takes to drop the beer to crystal clarity.