The Los Angeles Lakers are expected to be active on the trade market this offseason, and Kyle Kuzma appears to be the name to watch.
The Lakers are looking to significantly upgrade their roster after a disappointing season. They could pursue another star player this summer, with Kyle Lowry mentioned as a possibility. According to Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer, the Lakers are open to trading Kuzma and have been gauging interest in him around the league.
Another way the Lakers could try to add a third star player is via sign-and-trade. Fischer notes that point guard Dennis Schroder — who is set to become a free agent — carries a higher trade value than Kuzma around the NBA. L.A. is unlikely to re-sign Schroder, but a sign-and-trade is a possibility.
Kuzma averaged 12.9 points and 6.1 rebounds per game this season. The big man moved to the bench last year with the arrival of Anthony Davis and made just eight starts after starting 68 games the year before. Kuzma started 32 games this season because of injuries to Davis and LeBron James, but he was unhappy with how much he moved around. He recently expressed frustration in his role and said he wants more consistency going forward.
Kuzma appeared to send a message about his future in L.A. with a big change to his social media profiles last month. It seems obvious that he would welcome a trade, especially now that Davis is under contract with the Lakers for three more seasons. The team is at least open to parting ways with Kuzma.