Kyle Kuzma was the figurehead of the Los Angeles Lakers trade rumors heading into the NBA Trade Deadline but the team ultimately decided against trading Kuzma. While the team did not pull the trigger then, it does not guarantee Kuzma’s long-term future with the team.
Right now, the biggest focus is getting back into action and hopefully finishing what could be a lost season. But even if the season is canceled, the Lakers won’t simply “run it back” and will look to improve in any way possible.
One of the ways they could improve is by trading Kuzma. It is only worth doing if the package is valued fairly, there is no point in the Lakers trading Kuzma just to trade him.
If the Los Angeles Lakers do trade Kyle Kuzma then they need to find a replacement.
The Lakers will likely not trade Kuzma for his replacement, as that would seem kind of redundant. However, if Kuzma is dealt, which would likely be for a guard, then the Lakers would have to turn either back to the trade market or to free agency to replace his spot on the roster.
The team could not only get better by trading Kuzma for a different asset but could even get better simply by bringing someone else in to be the team’s third forward. Kuzma is talented, but he does not produce the two things that make someone successful alongside LeBron James: defense and three-point shooting.
Here are three stretch forward candidates that the Los Angeles Lakers could look to replace Kyle Kuzma with, in no particular order.