Last night, the Los Angeles Lakers got beat down by their rival Boston Celtics, 139-107. It was an emotionally debilitating loss, as it was easily the Lakers worst all season in actual point differential as well as the weight that it carried with it in the TD Garden. It was one of the few bad beats in a Lakers’ season that has few of them, as everyone on the team has pretty much nothing to be upset about aside from a few of them having a nagging injury here and there. However, the Lakers do have championship aspirations and because of that, they may look to be buyers at the NBA Trade Deadline that’s coming up on February 6th. That’s where Kyle Kuzma may be having a bit more of a negative outlook on this season compared to his other teammates.
Last year, the Lakers played in Boston following the conclusion of the trade deadline. In that game, the Lakers celebrated as Rajon Rondo hit a buzzer-beating game-winner. After the Lakers’ much more disappointing game in Boston on Monday night, Bill Oram of The Athletic asked Kyle Kuzma about that day, as Kuzma was in the Lakers’ trade rumors last year as well.
“That was a weird day. Before trade deadline it was weird, you knew something was going to happen but you didn’t know what was going to happen. But like after the deadline it was like you’ve got to play a game.”
Although the entire team had a rough game in Boston, Kuzma’s bad game (13 points on 4-of-12 shooting) seems to stand out, whether that’s because of the trade rumors or the commentary on his inconsistencies this season. Either way, Kuzma seemed to dispell the thought that any of his bad play could be attributed to the trade rumors revolving around him this year, saying this:
“I consumed it more last year,” he (Kuzma) said. “This year is different I don’t care at all, but last year it was new and foreign, so it was like more of a can’t-really-escape-it thing. But for me it’s a little bit easier now. I don’t really have my Twitter like that. I don’t really use it.”
It remains to be seen whether or not the Lakers will trade Kyle Kuzma. His salary is very low with it still being a part of his rookie deal, so it’ll be hard for the Lakers to find a deal to match salaries while simultaneously giving them a competitive advantage on the hardwood. He hasn’t been in many rumors lately since a deal with the Kings involving Bogdan Bogdanovic was around, but the Lakers have recently been connected to the Detroit Pistons’ Derrick Rose. Either way, it sounds as if Kuzma is more used to it this year, and won’t be letting it get to his head as he continues to try and help the Lakers.