Kyle Kuzma tackles the Lakers: “This proves that the grass isn’t always greener elsewhere…”
The Wizards might fall in the standings in the East, due to their nine-game losing streak, Kyle Kuzma take the opportunity, however, to show themselves in their best light and show a shining form in the capital.
With 21.3 points, 7.4 rebounds and 3.5 assists on average, 46% on shots and 34% on 3-pts, the 27-year-old winger is having the best season of his career. What piqued the interest of some teams, while the trade deadline will take place in two months.
For interested franchisees, there will also be Lakerswhere Kyle Kuzma showed himself between 2017 and 2021. Won the championship title in 2020, before being moved against a Russell Westbrook a year and a half ago today…
” It just proves that the grass isn’t always greener elsewhere… “, he slipped into this gossip, probably the exchange was still a bit bitter. ” In the end, it was obviously a good thing, because it meant I played well and had value in this league, to the point where a team wanted to set up a trade to bring me back. It is a privilege. »
A vague and difficult role to accept
Of course, Kyle Kuzma does not forget that his adventure in Los Angeles didn’t end on a high note. The influence decreased over the seasons and he could not establish himself as the third offensive option of the “Purple & Gold”, he was not able to emerge from the shadow of LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
” It’s hard to be the ‘little brother’ of the team “, he admitted, about his role then. ” One night, you can shoot 10 times. Next night, we might just need you to get rebounds. Later in the night, you can play for 15 minutes, then 29 minutes the next time… You never know. […] I can be frustrated some nights, because I love it. Those who know me know that I am very competitive and I love basketball. So many times it bothered me that I didn’t have the chance to do what I do now: play, be myself. »
Always very close to LeBron James and Anthony Davis, whom he admits to regularly communicating on social networks, Kyle Kuzma still has a somewhat mixed memory of his stay in California.
” I think it’s one of the best things that’s ever happened to me to be drafted, to be a Laker, to have this exposure, to have millions of people know you. That includes playing the Lakers. Then learn from LeBron [James] and win the title… Everything is great “, he said at the beginning, before qualifying. ” At the same time, I always look back and wish I had seen better, given my role and all that I sacrificed. It’s good to sacrifice, because it’s the only way to win titles, everyone has to go through. But I don’t think I got to the right side of the table. Then, nothing happened by chance and I ended up in Washington, where I expanded my game and developed. »
Free agent in July?
As he said so well, then Kyle Kuzma arrived in Washington and, the good news of this story, returned him to the statistics worthy of his first two years in the league (17.3 points average between 2017 and 2019).
” I need this [de ce changement d’air] “, he judged with hindsight. ” This change was very important in my life, I only became more mature. I love basketball, but I love it more now. I love my job, I love going to training every day, in the gym, in this kind of situation. Seeing how good I was made me obsessed with trying to get better, over and over again. »
In any case, Wizards coach Wes Unseld Jr. hopes. that Kyle Kuzma will remain in the capital despite trade deadline. And why not beyond this summer, because remember that the 27th choice of the 2017 Draft will have the opportunity to test the market in the coming months and that he should not miss the opportunity to do so, to win more. No matter the destination.
So the risk for the team hoping to get him back in the coming weeks is to see him leave without compensation, almost by leaps and bounds. But because of their collective situation, the leaders of Washington should not dare to keep their player too long, to take advantage of his now relatively high popularity rating.