With the Trade Deadline approaching, many teams are expected to make changes to their rosters. While many of the teams expected to make some moves are fringe playoff teams, there are a handful of teams at the top of the league record-wise that could look to dabble in the trade market. One team looking to make moves is the Los Angeles Lakers.
Despite their dominant start, they have some concerns that they want to acknowledge and should be active near the trade deadline.
Their biggest trade asset is Kyle Kuzma. Kuzma has made headlines recently due to comments made by his trainer towards LeBron. Despite inconsistent play and injuries, Kuz could be a valuable piece to a team looking for youth and is only 24. With that being said, here are 5 teams that should look to trade for Kyle Kuzma
The Kings have had an up-and-down season this year. After a rocky start, they have picked up their play and currently sit as the 11th seed in the Western Conference and are just 1.5 games behind the Spurs for the 8th seed. The big talk in the Kings’ organization has been what will happen with Bogdan Bogdanovic. Bogdan hasn’t re-signed with the Kings and is set to be a free agent at the end of this season. The Kings have made it known that he is available, and the Lakers should pounce on this opportunity.
A potential trade would be Bogdanovich and a future 2nd round pick for Kyle Kuzma. On the Lakers, Bogdan would be an essential piece as his 3-point shooting and versatility could prove to be valuable on the team.
Kuzma would be in a new situation and an improved role on the Kings. This move could allow Marvin Bagley to play center and Kuzma to play power forward which could be beneficial to both players.
The Magic have been an interesting team this season. We the mixture of young players and veterans on this team, it is uncertain in the direction that they want to go in. Currently the 7th seed in the East, they aren’t contenders so it would make sense for them to blow the roster up and rebuild.
A potential trade would be D.J. Augustin and Evan Fournier for Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Avery Bradley, Rajon Rondo, and multiple 2nd-round picks. Augustin would be an immediate upgrade over Rondo and Fournier would be the perfect 6th man off the bench for the Lakers.
With Markelle Fultz, Jonathan Issac, Mo Bamba, and Aaron Gordon, the Magic have a nice assortment of young pieces and Kuzma could be the icing on the cake. The multiple 2nd-round picks could get them an impactful player and this move would clear cap space.
The Wizards were once a constant playoff team. After years of mediocrity, the Wizards were able to draft John Wall and Bradley Beal and these two would change the franchise. This team was looked by many as a move away from being legit contenders but, due to an injury to John Wall, this team has been set back. Bradley Beal has been amazing this season and the Wizards have found some gems in Jordan McRae and Davis Bertans.
Trading for Kuzma could prove to be a wise move by this organization and he would help turn this organization into playoff contenders once again. A potential trade would be Kyle Kuzma and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope for Davis Bertans, Ish Smith, and a future 2nd round pick.
Kyle Kuzma and Rui Hachimura would be a great young duo to build for the future. This trade gives you a fallout option if John Wall doesn’t return to his former self and at the worst, he is just another asset. Bertans is having a stellar season and his 3-point shooting would take the Lakers’ offense to another level. Ish Smith can also provide the Lakers with bench scoring and would be an upgrade over Rondo.
The Pistons have some franchise-altering decisions to make. The Pistons have been in the news lately as they are trying to move on from Andre Drummond. The Hawks are the team that has been connected to him, but others have been in contact. Another player on their roster that should have a lot of interest from other teams is Derrick Rose.
Rose has been one of the best bench players in the league and would be a huge upgrade over what the Lakers currently have. A potential trade would be Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and Avery Bradley for Derrick Rose and Langston Galloway.
Kuzma could be a building block for the Pistons and would give them another young asset. D-Rose would give the Lakers a scoring punch off the bench and is another upgrade over Rajon Rondo.
San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs need to rebuild. Their 2-decade streak of making the playoffs is in jeopardy of ending as they are currently 5 games under .500 and have the Grizzlies and Blazers just 0.5 games behind them. With LaMarcus Aldridge aging and DeMar DeRozan set to become a free agent this offseason, they should look to acquire young pieces and move veterans.
A potential trade would be Patty Mills, Bryn Forbes, and a heavily protected first-round pick for Kyle Kuzma, KCP, and Rajon Rondo. Kuzma would add to your assortment of young players and would become a key contributor for you. Learning from Gregg Popovich could help to improve his game and accelerate his development.
Patty Mills and Bryn Forbes could be key contributors for the Lakers off the bench. Patty would be a good facilitator and three-point shooter off the bench while Forbes could develop into a solid 3-D player.