***UPDATE: The reported terms of the deal are now detailed below by Marc Stein/The New York Times***
The deal with @PUMAHoops that the Lakers' Kyle Kuzma finalized last week will pay him in the $3 million range annually over the next five seasons, industry sources say
— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) October 2, 2019
It’s been quite the up-and-down offseason for Kyle Kuzma.
On one hand, he was able to survive the exodus of the Los Angeles Lakers’ young players when the team traded for Anthony Davis, making him one of the most key players for the Lakers moving forward. He was also on his way to making Team USA’s roster for the FIBA World Cup which is quite the accomplishment for a young player.
However, he wasn’t able to proceed with Team USA due to an ankle/foot injury. It was seen as a precaution to keep him out of the rest of the FIBA tournament, with the NBA regular season around the corner. It then came out that this injury was going to keep him out of at least the beginning of training camp, causing his season to already get off to a bad start.
Around the same time we got news that Kuzma would probably be held out of the beginning of training camp, we received word of another “up” for Kuzma, as he was reportedly closing in on a shoe deal with Puma, leaving his current deal with Nike. On Wednesday morning, Shams Charania/The Athletic/Stadium reported that this deal is now official to the tune of a five-year endorsement deal.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) October 2, 2019
What’s even more interesting about the news is Charania’s words that Kuzma will become a face of the company. He will join an impressive Puma roster of young, up-and-coming stars in Marvin Bagley, DeAndre Ayton, and Michael Porter Jr. Puma is also helmed creatively by Jay-Z, which I’m sure factored into all of those players’ decisions to join the brand, along with Kuzma’s decision too.
Kyle Kuzma is arguably the most popular athlete of the people mentioned above, so it’s safe to bet that he got paid handsomely. Hopefully Kuzma can turn this positive into some positives regarding his injury, and he can get back on the court with the team before the season opener on October 22nd.