The summer of 2019 saw a changing of the tides for the Lakers. The young core they had previously hung their hats on were swapped for two superstars and a roster that was ready to win now.
Kyle Kuzma is the last remaining. And although the display through his first few seasons has been impressive, most are wondering why he was the one the team chose to keep over Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball, or even Josh Hart.
Kobe Bryant explained why on in a recent appearance on Real 92.3’s The Cruz Show.
“Probably his versatility and I think the game used to be about having specialists on the floor and I think it’s gotten away from that,” Bryant said. “They have guys that can play all facets of the game. That includes offensively and defensively. And defensively, he has the potential to be a great defensive player. That’s probably one of the things they looked at as well on top of the shooting ability, the passing ability, and just his size. Yeah, you put it all in the pot and I think it made him indispensable.”
Bryant thinks that Kuzma can play multiple facets of the game. His offensive skillset is exceptional for a young player, but he has yet to prove himself on the other end. Defensively, he was one of the team's worst defenders last season and contributed to the Lakers' low defensive rating as a team.
If he can improve that aspect of his game, there will be no limits to his potential. One way or another, the Lakers will find out what he is capable of as they compete for a title last season.