Back in October, the Brooklyn Nets were linked to having interest in Washington Wizards star forward Kyle Kuzma. Kuzma was traded to the Wizards in 2021 as part of the trade that sent Russell Westbrook to the Los Angeles Lakers. The 27-year-old forward is averaging an impressive 20.7 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 3.6 assists for Washington. An executive speculated to Heavy Sports that if the Wizards weren’t contending this year that they could look to move the forward ahead of the deadline. Now, reporting from Bleacher Reports’ Eric Pincus states that Kuzma is looking for a way out of Washington and wants to land in a big market somewhere else.
“He [Kuzma] wants out,” an NBA source said. “He’s looking for over $20 million a season and in a big market [or with a contender].”
Brooklyn fits the big market that Kuzma is looking for, and he would likely be a welcome addition. Kuzma would add a wealth of scoring options to an already rich starting lineup for the Nets. He also would give them size and flexibility. A potential small ball lineup of Kyrie Irving, Seth Curry, Kevin Durant, Ben Simmons, and Kyle Kuzma would be incredibly difficult to defend. Is it enough for the Nets to pull the trigger? What would it take to get a deal done?
Past Kuzma Links for the Brooklyn Nets
In October, a Western Conference Executive told Heavy Sports that the Nets aren’t done looking for deals and even named Cam Thomas or Day’Ron Sharpe as potential trade pieces to send to the Wizards.
“They need to cut out some salary, but obviously, they want to do that while also adding someone young to the mix. The Bulls are, again, in the market for depth at the position, so there is a possibility, though they do not want to mess with the luxury tax either. But that could be a Coby White destination. Dallas is just trying to get better players across the board. They can give up an unprotected pick for him and match up the salaries.”
“Kyle’s still fairly young (27), and that has appeal for a team like Dallas. And Brooklyn, I don’t think they’re done. They like their young guys but let’s face it, the clock on this team is running short, and they need to win now. Cam Thomas or Day’Ron Sharpe, someone like that would be a draw for the Wizards,” the executive told Heavy Sports.
Could a Kyle Kuzma Deal Get Done?
The Sharpe and Thomas pieces are certainly interesting starting points for a potential trade with the Wizards, and they would continue to add to their young team. Thomas is an instant bucket when he gets extended minutes, and NBA teams have already been calling for Thomas for over a year.
The Nets’ side of things feels more complicated on how Kuzma fits. They have a crowded frontcourt when it comes to the forward position with Royce O’Neale, TJ Warren, Joe Harris, Kevin Durant, Ben Simmons, and Markieff Morris. Does Kuzma have enough upside for the Nets to pursue a deal like this in the middle of the season and pay him the $20 million he is seeking? If the Nets believe he does, the window seems to be opening for them to acquire him.