Kyle Kuzma Talks Kobe Connection & Hunting Down Heat

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Kyle Kuzma may only be a year into his career, but he’s already that dude. Smooth on and off the court, the agile forward has made a splash in the league thanks to his confidence and flair for the moment — both personality traits that translate to a wild wardrobe birthed in Flint and heightened in Hollywood.

Like a Laker legend before him, Kuz is taking his sophomore summer to grow his hair out and go hard in the gym. Speaking with Kyle at Nike’s Just Do IT HQ in LA, we talked about his kicks both on court and off court as well as his appreciation for the franchise favorites that paved the way for him.

Without further ado, showtime.

Nice Kicks: Summer is here. When you’re not working on your game in the gym, which kicks are getting the most burn from you off court?

Kyle Kuzma: Off court? Man, a lot of Off-White shoes. I’m a big style guy and I think that Off-White is big to me based on what it is but also with the Nike collab. I’m also into a lot of designer stuff and I rock with Fran and the Sandalboyz. Those are my guys. Their guy Ray is my barber, that’s my guy.

Nice Kicks: Coming up in the league and getting a Nike deal you must have a crazy collection. With that said, what’s one pair of shoes you’re still looking for?

Kyle Kuzma: I have a big collection of shoes, I have so many Jordans I don’t even know. I’m looking for the Doernbecher 4s, though. I’m a size 15 so it’s tough. I’ve got a plug though, I just found one so I’m about to get them.

Nice Kicks: Growing up, what were your favorite kicks as a kid?

Kyle Kuzma: Jordan 4s, Air Force 1s and Air Maxes. Air Maxes are my go-to off court.

Nice Kicks: You seem to have a great relationship with Kobe. What’s it like knowing him and rocking his kicks on court in LA of all places?

Kyle Kuzma: He takes care of me for sure. We’ve got a good relationship so it’s definitely cool. A lot of people don’t necessarily compare us but point out our similarities so it’s a dream come true. I love the Protos. When the Black/Yellow 1s came out I wore them like five games in a row. Next year my shoe game is gonna be crazy with Kobe stuff.

Nice Kicks: Keeping it LA, you caught a lot of eyes when you came to a game rocking a vintage Nick Van Exel Lakers jersey. How’d that come about and what inspired you to wear that?

Kyle Kuzma: Man, I saw it at Round 2 on Melrose and had to get it right away. One, it was a jersey that nobody was really wearing. Two, Nick Van Exel is a really significant player in Lakers history. People that are older love Nick and I thought that’d be dope to bring it out. I’ve got a few vintage jerseys, I was just in Taipei at the NBA Store and picked up a ton of retro ones.

Keep up with Kuz this off-season on IG.

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