Los Angeles Lakers: Top 5 power forwards of the 2010s

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Los Angeles Lakers
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5. Kyle Kuzma 2017-19

Kyle Kuzma is an interesting name on this list, to say the least. He has all the talent to be one of the better players on the Lakers, but injuries and inconsistency have hurt him. He has had a very rough 2019-20 campaign so far in terms of health and even just ran into a little drama with Bron.

The Lakers drafted Kuzma with the 27th pick in the 2017 NBA draft. They got a lot of value back at that pick as he would go on to have a promising rookie season. He outplayed second overall pick Lonzo Ball and played well enough to be off-limits in an Anthony Davis trade.

In his rookie season, he averaged 16.1 points and 6.3 rebounds per game. His shooting splits were good at 45/36.6/70.7 and his eFG% was 52.7% and TS% was 54.9%. He earned an All-Rookie first-team selection with his season.

In his second season, he would regress in some areas but get better in others so it was a mixed bag. His FG% went up to 45.6% but his 3-point percentage dropped to 30.3%. His offensive rating went up from 105.3 to 108.4 but his defensive rating would regress from 107.5 to 109.7.

He didn’t hit a sophomore slump, he just didn’t progress from year one to year two like some players do. After an offseason with a lot of changes in Los Angeles, he set his sights on the 2019-20 campaign. He worked hard in the offseason to craft his game and become that third star to Bron and AD.

This season has been up-and-down, but when healthy, Kuzma has graded out well. His offensive rating is 109.3 and his defensive rating is 102.7, good for a +6.6 net-rating. He’s bumped his 3-point percentage back up to 36.3%.

He just needs to stay healthy and be consistent. He’s far from being the third star right now, but if he keeps progressing he will be helpful for this team. With Bron and AD battling injuries this is his perfect time to prove his worth to this team.