LeBron James' groin injury has taken more time than expected to heal, as the initial assessment of James' injury has now gone out of the window and the star has been out for the last 8 games, with confirmation coming in that he'll be missing the Utah Jazz game too.
So with James likely out, Kuzma could be the Lakers' go-to guy as he was Wednesday when he became the fifth player in the National Basketball Association this year to score more than 40 points through three quarters, as he sat out the final quarter of the blowout victory. The Lakers are allowing just 41.4 percent shooting in their last five games and giving up 106.2 points, which is a massive improvement over their season numbers.
Due to the groin injury that LeBron James suffered in the Los Angeles Lakers' Christmas Day bout against the Golden State Warriors, it was widely presumed that he'd still be unable to play in this upcoming Friday's contest against the Utah Jazz. The Utah Jazz are averaging 107.8 points on 46.4 percent shooting and allowing 105.5 points on 46 percent shooting.
"I think I found my jump shot", Kuzma said after the game. The team is shooting 47 percent from the field and 34 percent from three-point range. Brandon Ingram is the third double-digit scorer and JaVale McGee is grabbing 6.8 rebounds.
Jazz fans heading to the game will likely be disappointed that they won't get to see LeBron James in action with the Lakers in town, but fortunately, assuming he's healthy, he'll be back for the third meeting of the season on March 27th. The Los Angeles Lakers have lost five of their last eight road games. The under is 10-3-1 in Jazz last 14 overall.
The Jazz and Lakers met in November with L.A. taking a 90-83 victory. The two teams will meet a fourth time during the final week of the season on April 7 at Staples Center.