After having a couple of flashy seasons for the Los Angeles Lakers, Kyle Kuzma becoming a better all-around player. He’s not putting up big numbers but he’s had major improvements on the defensive end of the floor. The Lakers rewarded him with a big contract extension prior to the season’s start.
While he’s only averaging 11.5 a game, which is a career-low, Kuzma could be having his best season and might even be playing at a discount, according to Dan Woike of the Los Angeles Times.
“Kuzma’s playing the best basketball of his career – helping the Lakers win in a bunch of different ways on a pretty consistent basis,” Woike wrote. “His extension this offseason, in the eyes of rival scouts, is looking like a bargain.”
Kuzma may not be the third star the Lakers were hoping he’d become, but he’s developing into an all-around player that can impact both sides of the floor. It’s clear that he’s respected around the league and Los Angeles is likely very happy with their decision to extend him.
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Lakers Have ‘Some Interest’ in Bringing Back JaVale McGee
With the NBA All-Star break currently taking place, the Lakers are gearing up for the second half of the season. They started off the season looking like the league’s best team but have fallen off a bit over the last month. They’ve dropped to the third seed in the Western Conference and clearly need some help.
“I think JaVale McGee would be a nice addition – he’s willing to sacrifice, gives the Lakers a dimension they miss without having to add a huge ego,” Woike wrote. “I’ve heard there’s some interest, but McGee would need to be traded to another team from Cleveland and then be bought out to be eligible to sign with the Lakers.”
McGee started 68 games for the Lakers last season and was a great fit in the locker room. They traded him in the offseason so they could have money to sign Marc Gasol. Gasol has been solid but he lacks the athletism that McGee brought to the team. Unfortunately, it doesn’t sound like there’s much of a chance the Lakers will be able to bring him back.
Are Lakers Looking for a Big?
The Lakers have been linked to McGee, Hassan Whiteside, Andre Drummond, P.J. Tucker and Blake Griffin. It’s clear that they believe they need a big. However, adding a big shouldn’t be their focus. Davis is going to return soon and he’ll fix a lot of the team’s problems, but not their biggest problem: shooting.
The Lakers are not a good 3-point shooting team. They got off to an amazing start to the season but have fallen on hard times. Shooting was an issue for the team last season and they haven’t fixed it. Instead of putting all this effort into finding a big, the Lakers should poke around and see what shooters are available.