Report: Lakers ‘open’ to an extension for Kyle Kuzma despite ongoing ‘trade’ talks

Jonathan Sherman
3 Min Read

The Los Angeles Lakers have a clear trade asset in the young and talented Kyle Kuzma, and a recent report indicates that the team is indeed taking calls on potential offers.

However, Ramona Shelburne of ESPN also reported that the Lakers are open to giving the talented youngster a contract extension.

“I know that there have been trade conversations with Kuzma, just gauging the market for him,” Shelburne said during a recent podcast appearance. “I (also) think the Lakers would be open to signing him to an extension, and I think he would be open to signing an extension here. The question is how big, and for how long, and also what is his role?

“I think last year there was this sense that Kuz was sort of biding his time, that he was playing a role and he was doing it because he was on a championship team and this is great, but he sort of wants to flap his wings a little bit. I think because of that there’s this feeling of ‘is this a match for him long term, does he want to get paid substantially?’”

Shelburne added that none of the proposed trades have thus far been very exciting.

“I personally have not heard any trade conversations that are exciting at all with him. … I don’t think his value is as high as anybody would assume it is based off of his talent. I don’t think his value on the trade market matches his talent at all. One because he was playing in a complementary role, i.e. not starting last year, two he’s due for a big payday and you have to decide if you want to give him that, and invest in him that way, and three you could just wait for him to hit free agency.

“You could just wait after this year where we have a little more knowledge about where things stand. The Lakers don’t have to do anything. They don’t have to give him this extension. They could just let him play it out.”

While the Lakers will surely look to improve this season, there is no reason why they should feel pressured to trade Kuzma.

Kuzma had a disappointing season from a statistical standpoint in the 2019-20 season, but he still contributed to the Lakers’ title run in a big way.

He averaged 10.0 points and 3.1 rebounds per game in the playoffs.

If none of the trade offers pique their interest, the Lakers are probably best served to keep Kuzma on and see how he develops in his second year playing alongside Anthony Davis.

Hopefully, he shows improvement and can prove that he deserves an extension or becomes more worthy of an exciting trade offer.

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Jonathan is a freelance writer, filmmaker, and passionate fan of the NBA. In the past Jonathan has covered politics, entertainment, travel, and more. He is a proud contributor of Lakers Daily.