Los Angeles Lakers ahead Kyle Kuzma has gotten off to about nearly as good of a begin as any rookie might hope for. Kuzma has pressured his means into the beginning lineup and ranks second on the workforce in scoring with 15.four factors per sport whereas capturing 56.three % from the sphere and 33.three % from behind the arc.
Kuzma has been greater than only a scorer, although, rating third on the Lakers in rebounds (6.three) and guarding a number of positions on protection.
That sort of manufacturing could be good for any participant of their first yr, however Kuzma doesn’t contemplate himself simply one other rookie. He’s holding himself to a better customary, by way of Lakers Nation reporter Serena Winters:
“I don’t really compare rookies because my focus is one, winning and two, I try to focus on all the top players in the league, because that’s where I want to be, so I don’t feel like rookies are a stick point for me to try to battle with…I look at guys like (Giannis) Antetokounmpo and LeBron (James) because eventually, that’s where I want to be,” Kuzma mentioned.
Now it’s necessary to notice that each James and Antetokounmpo had been each 19-year-olds throughout their rookie seasons whereas Kuzma is 22, however it’s fascinating that his numbers examine comparatively favorably to these two superstars, per Basketball-Reference:
Can Kuzma ever be nearly as good as these guys? It’s unlikely if solely as a result of each James and Antetokounmpo are generational abilities, the forms of gamers groups can construct round for almost all of 20 years.
Still, at this level, it simply appears silly to doubt Kuzma, who has confirmed doubters flawed at each flip to rise from late-first spherical decide to Las Vegas Summer League sensation and now Lakers starter.
Lakers basic supervisor Rob Pelinka referred to as Kuzma a “perfect” draft decide, but when his confidence and work ethic can ever end in him even getting talked about in the identical breath as these two gamers, then the Lakers gained’t simply have made a “perfect” decide. They’ll have made among the best alternatives in NBA historical past.
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