Kyle Kuzma gets praised as Lakers’ ‘invaluable’ piece
Although the Los Angeles Lakers have only played in nine games this season, Frank Vogel believes Kyle Kuzma has been irreplaceable for the Lakers thus far.
“Kuz is an extremely versatile player, Vogel said on Friday. “That’s what we love about him. … the versatility he brings to the table has been invaluable for us so far.”
In nine games this season, the 25-year-old forward is averaging 11.1 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.2 assists in just 26.6 minutes per game. He’s also shooting 44 percent from the field and a career-high 36 percent from three-point range. Although Kuzma’s stats aren’t exactly eye-popping, it’s the little things that Kuzma does that make him so invaluable — for example cutting to the basket, or creating his own shot to give the playmakers a rest.
In addition to his offense, Kuzma’s defense has tremendously improved from last season. For example, in the Lakers’ last two games against the Memphis Grizzlies, Kuzma guarded Dillon Brooks for around 8 minutes in total. In those 8 minutes when guarded by Kuzma, Brooks shot 12.5 percent from the field and 25 percent from three-point range.
Nevertheless, with the recent announcement that Anthony Davis will miss Friday’s game against the Chicago Bulls, you should expect Kuzma to start at the power forward position. In the last game Davis missed, Kuzma started in his place and went off for 20 points and three assists in just 29 minutes of action.
Check out his highlights below:
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) December 28, 2020
Aside from the five-point game he had against the Memphis Grizzlies on Tuesday, Kuzma has been living up to his $40 million contract extension he signed back in December so far.