Rumblings on a potential Kyle Kuzma trade have simmered down recently during the 2019-20 NBA season.
As the Los Angeles Lakers look to improve their roster in hopes of winning a championship this season, Kuzma has emerged as the team’s only real trade asset.
Rajon Rondo, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and JaVale McGee would have to approve any deal which is unlikely while the likes of Jared Dudley and Troy Daniels are unlikely to bring back anything that could really help the team’s championship pursuits. One team that has been mentioned in a potential Kuzma trade is the Sacramento Kings with Bogdan Bogdanovic as the rumored target for the Lakers.
The reports were that it was the Lakers who engaged with the Kings on a possible deal and now more rumors have come out. According to Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer, Sacramento originally offered Nemanja Bjelica for Kuzma with the Lakers countering with Bogdanovic:
Sacramento doesn’t need to trade Bogdanovic, and it has declined some offers already. The Kings offered Nemanja Bjelica and a pick to the Lakers for Kyle Kuzma, and Los Angeles countered by asking for Bogdanovic, according to multiple league sources. Sacramento refused.
The original offer from the Kings is an intriguing one. Bjelica is a sharp-shooting combo forward who brings a lot of things to the table. He’s averaging a career-high in points (12.3), rebounds (6.4), and assists (2.7) while shooting 43.3 percent from three-point range on five attempts a game. That being said, Bogdanovic is the superior player and fits more of a need for the Lakers.
In addition to being a great shooter and scorer, Bogdanovic is also an active defender as well as a solid playmaker in the pick-and-roll. Though he is new to NBA fans, he spent years playing and winning on the biggest stages overseas and would not be intimidated in a deep playoff run.
Of course, those are the same reasons why Sacramento would prefer not to trade him or would at least look around for other possible deals. For as promising a player Kuzma is, his struggles this season have been concerning and there are some questioning what his potential truly is.
Whatever the Lakers ultimately choose to do, they will be doing so in hopes of putting themselves in the best position to bring home that Larry O’Brien trophy in June.