Ever since Kobe Bryant retired, the Los Angeles Lakers have been trying to find someone who will be the next face of the franchise. Expecting one player to replace everything that Bryant brought to the franchise is pretty unfair, but if there is one member of the Lakers young core who has that same on-court mindset, it is Kyle Kuzma.
Much like Kobe, Kuzma has no problems taking a shot in any situation. The stage never seemed to bright for Kuzma even though he was just a rookie, and he always wanted the ball with the game on the line.
It was something that even Kobe noticed, as he took the rookie out to dinner early on during the season, allowing Kuzma to pick his brain. Kuzma received some great advice from the five-time champion during that meeting, but he still channels the Lakers legend in other ways.
In fact he revealed to Lee Jenkins of Sports Illustrated that he gets through a lot of situations by asking himself one specific question with Bryant in mind:
“I get through a lot of situations,” Kuzma says, “asking myself what Kobe would do.”
The big question here is whether Kuzma is talking strictly basketball or in life as well. Either way, asking yourself ‘what would Kobe do’ seems like an appropriate way to get through any problem.
As far as on the court, Kuzma is entering an extremely important offseason. He tied for the team lead in scoring at 16.1 points per game, but much more will be expected of him next season and a busy summer is essential to him taking the next step in his development.
Kuzma said that the main things he took away from speaking with Kobe were to stay level-headed and work as hard as possible. Using that advice, expect Kuzma to be in the gym all summer to improve every facet of his game.
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