Following the Lakers’ first title in a decade, fans and analysts are already looking to next season. On the most recent rendition of Fox’s Skip and Shannon Undisputed, co-host Sharpe criticized forward Kyle Kuzma’s performance in the finals despite the win.
Shortly after comparing Kuzma’s worth to Clorox and Tide, Sharpe went on to further bash his performances. “I am not pleased with the way he played in the NBA finals, so he could go,” he said.
Following the playoffs, many fans had Sharpe’s same ideas. In the playoff bubble, Kuzma’s stats slightly decreased from 12 points per game to 10 and 4.5 rebounds to just 3. Along with his downgraded offensive performance, the forward’s defense also drew questions from the fans.
His stats took a further hit in the finals as he only managed to average 8.5 points and 2.8 rebounds across the series.
It looks as if Kuzma thrives off of low-pressure situations. Just last year, as the Lakers missed the playoffs, he averaged almost 19 a game. And in his rookie year before that, he posted 16 points per game average.
For any team, players who thrive under pressure are essential, and Kuzma doesn’t seem to fit this profile. After all, rumors already exist of a potential Kuzma trade, with the Lakers looking to add a third star to compliment AD and LeBron.
Kuzma isn’t the young prospect he once was, so the Lakers may find trouble finding a good deal to offload the forward this offseason.