Kyle Kuzma has no shortage of resources available to him this season, to say the least. Not only does he have LeBron James at his disposal for advice, but he’s also kept in touch with Lakers legend Kobe Bryant. As far as mentors go, he could do a lot worse.
After practice on Wednesday, Kuzma said he’s grateful for how available Bryant has made himself since they first met last November.
“He’s always been a good resource, ever since I met him,” Kuzma said. “Any time I have questions, or I can send him film and he’ll hit me back pretty quickly and tell me what he thinks. It helps me out a lot.”
The last piece of film Kuzma sent Bryant wasn’t for him to break down, though. Kuzma said he sent Bryant a clip of the behind-the-backboard shot he made against the Memphis Grizzlies over the weekend, knowing Bryant made a few of those himself during his career:
“Made sure he saw that,” Kuzma said with a smile. “He just laughed.”
However, Kuzma said his confidence in taking those shot doesn’t come from emulating Bryant alone.
“I’m just always super confident because of my work ethic. I really just tried to build off of a good year last year this summer to get better and work on the things that I wasn’t good at,” Kuzma said. “Now people are seeing it, especially when I have the ball in my hands a little bit more.”
Whatever he’s doing, it’s been working for him.
Over his last 10 games, Kuzma is averaging 20.2 points, 7.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists while posting a net rating of +7.9. At least one of the rookies Bryant worked out with this summer is enjoying a successful sophomore season.
As long as Kuzma continues to work hard on his game, he should remain in good standing with Bryant, and it sounds like Bryant is happy to help Kuzma continue that hard work.
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