The Lakers have made big moves in free agency. With the acquisitions of Dennis Schroder and Montrezl Harrell, it becomes hard to see Kyle Kuzma's fit on the roster. Once billed to be the third star on the Lakers, these signings have suggested that the Los Angeles Lakers are looking for veterans who can play a role, rather than young players who want to break out. Kyle Kuzma falls into the latter category, so the Lakers likely trade him for an elite veteran who can play a role on a contender.
Kyle Kuzma is still young and full of promise: he averaged 16.1 and 18.7 PPG during his first two years in the league, before taking a smaller role on LeBron James' Lakers to win a championship. Kuzma will want to get paid next season as his contract is up: now would be the best time to trade him for another piece. If he gets traded, he can take a bigger role on another team, while landing the Lakers a valuable player. These are some of the players that the Lakers could take a look at.
5. Evan Fournier
Los Angeles Lakers Receive: Evan Fournier
Orlando Magic Receive: Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
Evan Fournier is a great SG who is used as one of the main scorers on the Orlando Magic. He can create his own shot and have a prominent role in an offense, but he will never truly carry a team. A player like Fournier fits offensively around superstars who would dominate touches. Fournier would be a massive upgrade on the roster due to fit: Fournier doesn't need to have the ball in his hands due to being an excellent shooter off the catch. Essentially a great shooter who can thrive as a starter or as a bench player.
Kuzma to the Magic would allow him to play for a place where he would undoubtedly be asked to score. Kuzma could be part of Orlando's young core with Aaron Gordon, Jonathan Isaac, and Markelle Fultz. Among those players, Kuzma is the superior scorer, while the others are all more stout defensively. Kuzma could ignite the offense on the Orlando Magic while being surrounded by a defensive team. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope would be there to match salaries and be a shooter.
4. Buddy Hield
Los Angeles Lakers Receive: Buddy Hield
Sacramento Kings Receive: Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Alex Caruso
Buddy Hield is a shooting guard who could benefit from a change of pace. Being stuck on a franchise that never makes the playoffs can be demoralizing for a young player. Hield also got benched by the Kings for his defensive woes, adding to his misery. A new setting on a contender could revitalize Hield, especially on a contender where he'd be playing with two superstars. Hield is an elite shooter who has won the 3PT contest before, so he can easily play with high usage players who dominate the ball.
Meanwhile, the Kings would get rid of Hield, putting Haliburton in a bigger role. Tyrese Haliburton was billed as a top 10 pick and offers more versatility than Hield. Adding Kuzma as a third scorer, along with solid role players like Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Alex Caruso should give the Kings a very nice roster for the future.
3. JJ Redick
Los Angeles Lakers Receive: JJ Redick
New Orleans Pelicans Receive: Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
JJ Redick would be an amazing fit with the Lakers. Big men like Anthony Davis benefit from having shooters on the floor, while LeBron James has been playing with catch and shoot players like Ray Allen and Kyle Korver for a long time. Essentially Redick would thrive in a system that would give him a lot of off-ball duties while being set up by a wizard playmaker like LeBron James. Redick could spot up for wide-open threes while also being good enough to hit contested threes off the dribble if needed.
If the Pelicans want to develop their young core organically, then they could line up the rest of the roster to Zion Williamson's timeline. Kyle Kuzma is younger than JJ Redick and offers plenty of potential through his shot creation abilities as a forward. If the Pelicans slide Brandon Ingram to the SG, it would allow Kuzma to have a starting role. A young player with potential like Kuzma for an ageless shooter like JJ Redick would be a perfect swap for both sides. A replacement shooter in Kentavious Caldwell-Pope would just be the cherry on top for the Pelicans.
2. DeMar DeRozan
Los Angeles Lakers Receive: DeMar DeRozan
San Antonio Spurs Receive: Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Alex Caruso
DeMar DeRozan is from Compton, CA. The Los Angeles Lakers would be a hometown team that he could pay for and have his family be there. On top of that, he could finally win a ring with LeBron James. James destroyed the DeRozan led Raptors in the Eastern Conference, but as a third option, DeRozan would be elite to have next to the Lakers' two superstars. He boasts an elite midrange toolkit and is an underrated playmaker. If there is a deal to be had for DeRozan, then the Lakers should do it.
Kyle Kuzma would headline the deal to bring DeRozan home. Kuzma would give the San Antonio Spurs a forward with potential as a scorer. Dejounte Murray seems to be an all-around point guard, rather than a prolific bucket-getter. Derrick White is inconsistent. Before Anthony Davis came to the Lakers, Kuzma had a strong showing as a scorer. This could be the Spurs' chance to retool to become younger while getting extra assets to trade down the line.
1. Derrick Rose
Los Angeles Lakers Receive: Derrick Rose
Detroit Pistons Receive: Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
Derrick Rose would be the perfect 6th Man on the Lakers. Assuming that LeBron James goes back to SF and Dennis Schroeder starts, they will need someone to get guaranteed points off the bench. Rose could also start as a small SG. The Lakers could bring in the former MVP, with the promises of an opportunity to get a ring. Rose is known as a scorer, and as someone who can rise in the clutch. The Lakers need a player who can push them over the top, and Derrick Rose could be that player.
The Pistons would get another young forward in Kyle Kuzma to develop alongside Sekou Doumbouya. That would give them potential at the SF and PF positions and put them in the right direction for the future. Rose could compete for a championship, and fulfill the only missing thing on his Hall of Fame resume.
" target="_blank" rel="noopener">The Most Realistic Blockbuster Trade: Miami Heat Can Land James Harden For 5 Players