Los Angeles Lakers: 3 players stepping up with Brandon Ingram out

(Photo by Adam Pantozzi/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Adam Pantozzi/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images) /

1. Kyle Kuzma

With Kentavious Caldwell-Pope making up around five of Ingram’s 15 points per game, Kyle Kuzma has taken care of the rest of missing point total. Kuz is playing the best ball of the season over the past three games, averaging 26.7 points per game while shooting 56.7 percent from the field and 40.9 percent on 7.3 3-point attempts a night.

Kuz is the second-leading scorer for the Los Angeles Lakers on the season at 17.9 points per game, but he’s taking six extra shots with Ingram out and, like KCP, is taking advantage of the space on the floor.

Kyle Kuzma will always be an aggressive scorer, so him taking on the majority of the scoring void is no surprise. But him increasing his rebounding total (8.0 per game over the last three games) and making up half of Ingram’s missing boards shows he’s doing more than simply making shots.

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Kuzma has been one of the more streaky shooters since his college days at the University of Utah, so this hot streak shouldn’t surprise anyone despite it being a small sample size. This is just a case of a player getting hot at the perfect time while taking advantage of an increased role in a great environment for spacing. The Los Angeles Lakers will need Kuzma to continue this play with Ingram not joining the team on the early part of the road trip.