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Kyle Kuzma names Damian Lillard, Kyrie Irving in response to Luka Doncic defensive stats

Kyle Kuzma, Lakers

Science and forms of analytics have been applied to NBA players in an effort to gain a closer look at their athletic abilities. But for Kyle Kuzma of the Los Angeles Lakers, nothing compares to a player’s actual performance on the court.

Kuzma responded via Twitter to a short clip featuring an analysis of top prospect Luka Doncic. The clip emphasizes how elite of an athlete Doncic is — breaking down his superb lateral acceleration, among other qualities. Such abilities make him more than capable to play in basketball’s biggest stage.

For the Lakers forward, such exercises are valid. However, he also believes that numbers are nothing compared to actually stepping on the floor against a Kyrie Irving or a Damian Lillard:

Kuzma’s response was met by bitter replies. Some defended Doncic, noting that he’s been playing professional ball since he was young. Among all the prospects, he’s the readiest. Others said that Doncic will beat Kuzma one-on-one easily. One was more neutral, saying that Doncic’s athleticism will not suffice but through time and experience, he will achieve elite status.

To be fair with Kyle Kuzma, he has actually matched up with the best one-on-one players in the NBA. If anyone holds credibility on the matter, it is definitely Kuzma. Critics can say all they want. But at the end of the day, it’s the players who play. They know the game better than most of us.