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LeBron James Challenges Kyle Kuzma: "Do You Want To Score A Bunch Of Points Or… Be A Part Of Something Special?"

(via Silver Screen and Roll)

(via Silver Screen and Roll)

25-year-old Kyle Kuzma is all that remains of the Lakers' infamous "young core" that preceeded the LeBron James era.

Picked up by L.A. in the first round of the 2017 draft, Kuz exceeded expectations during his rookie campaign, averaging 16.1 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game on 45% shooting. There was a time when fans considered him to be one of their core players.

Upon LeBron's arrival, though, Kuzma faded into the limelight and has since struggled to adapt and adjust to his role off the bench.

Amid trade rumors, and the annual deadline looming, there is a strong feeling that the young stud might not be with the team for much longer -- something that Kuzma himself must be feeling in some capacity.

In a chat with the media, LeBron James spoke up about his teammate, challenging him to figure out what he really wants his career to be about: scoring or winning.

(via Lakers Daily)

“It all depends what you want in this sport, to be honest,” LeBron James said. “… Do you want to score a bunch of points but sometimes it doesn’t really matter or doesn’t make a difference in winning or losing? Or do you want to be a part of something special where you continue to get better, you continue to make an impact and you have a role on the team where you’re playing for something more than the sum of your individuality?”

Granted, a trade from the Lakers opens Kuzma up to all kinds of possibilities. He could break out and lead a team to great success, putting himself back on the map as a star on the rise.

But what the Lakers have built in L.A. is so rare, and it's not real easy to find or create a similar situation with another team. Behind LeBron and Anthony Davis, the Lakers are succeeding in one of the world's biggest markets -- and chemistry is at an all-time high.

This season, coming off an NBA Championship victory, the Purple and Gold are dominating the West once again. Best of all, there doesn't seem to be any noise coming from the locker room. Kuzma may not be happy about sitting in the back, but sticking around for the ride might just be worth the sacrifice.