The Los Angeles Lakers traded Kyle Kuzma to the Washington Wizards during the offseason in the deal that ultimately netted them Russell Westbrook.
So far, the trade seems to be working out well for him. Five games into the season Kuzma is averaging 15.2 points per game, his highest total in three seasons. Moreover, he is also averaging a career-high 10.8 rebounds and 1.4 steals.
Clearly the additional playing time is doing wonders for Kuzma’s stats. He is currently playing six more minutes than he did last season, and nine minutes more than he did two years ago.
This past week, Kuzma sat down with Chris Miller of NBC Washington. They spoke about a number of issues, including the impact playing alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis ultimately had on Kuzma’s career.
The former Laker is looking to mesh being the scoring option with doing the little things this year with the Wizards.
— NBCSports Washington (@NBCSWashington) October 27, 2021
“When LeBron comes and AD comes, we’re all in the same position so obviously you have to take a backseat and rightfully so, there’s nothing wrong with that,” Kuzma said.
“For me, I’ve been able to have that scoring role but also do the little things, the intangible things: boxing out, rebounding, playing defense. Just the little things that you need to win championships and win at a high level, I was able to gain that too. I’m looking to put it all together now so it’s great.”
Paige Spiranac just won Halloween. https://t.co/HUf7gMo9k5
— Game 7 (@game7__) October 30, 2021
Kuzma’s position on the Lakers and his time there has vacillated between fond remembrance and abject saltiness. In both scenarios, however, he has expressed a clear fondness for the new opportunity he has been given with the Wizards.
It will be interesting to see how Kuzma fares this year. Currently, he appears on track to have a career-best season. Whether he’ll be able to keep this momentum up remains to be seen.