Although Lonzo Ball was the No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft, it was Kyle Kuzma who often stole plenty of headlines in his rookie season with the Los Angeles Lakers. Kuzma flashed a refined offensive repertoire and work ethic that endeared him to coaches.
With Ball, Kuzma, Josh Hart, Brandon Ingram and Julius Randle, the Lakers had a young core that many pointed to as trade chips in a blockbuster deal or attractive pieces for star free agents. Sure enough, it was enticing to LeBron James who signed a four-year contract.
While James raved about the Lakers’ young talent, the team seemingly made everyone available within the past week as part of concerted efforts to trade for Anthony Davis before the 12 p.m. PT deadline on Thursday.
Although Kuzma was included as a key component in the Lakers’ offers to the New Orleans Pelicans, Brian Windhorst implied on “NBA Countdown” the second-year forward is unlikely to be part of a trade for Davis, via ESPN:
“I think I can tell Kyle Kuzma take the blindfold off, you’re not getting traded to the Pelicans.”
Windhorst’s blindfold remark was in response to Kuzma joking with reporters about wearing one a la the plot from Netflix’s “Bird Box.” Meanwhile, when pressed on his insinuation the Lakers won’t trade for Davis, Windhorst clarified and emphasized Kuzma not being part of a deal with the Pelicans.
That suggests the Lakers may be shopping him in other trades in effort to improve their roster for a playoff push. On the Davis front, L.A. is said to have little optimism the Pelicans will come around to presenting a counteroffer or re-opening dialogue.
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