Kyle Kuzma’s ankle injury will keep him off Team USA for FIBA World Cup

Kyle Kuzma prepares to shoot during training camp.
Kyle Kuzma at Team USA training camp in El Segundo on Aug. 13.
(Harry How / Getty Images)

Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma will not be able to go on participating with Team USA basketball due to a left ankle injury.

The decision, which was announced after Team USA lost for the first time in nearly 13 years, sets the club’s roster for the upcoming FIBA World Cup.

Kuzma was absent as Team USA lost 98-94 to Australia in Melbourne, snapping a 78-game winning streak for the U.S.


Considered a longshot to make the roster when camp originally commenced in Las Vegas in early August, Kuzma benefited from a string of injuries and withdrawals. He also combined good performances in a pair of exhibition games and it seemed like Kuzma would be with the team as they travel to China for the World Cup.

The rising stars on Team USA — which beat Spain 90-81 in an exhibition in Anaheim — realize they can sharpen their skills at an international level.

Aug. 16, 2019

Without him, Team USA will bring guards Kemba Walker, Donovan Mitchell, Marcus Smart and Derrick White, wings Harrison Barnes, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, Joe Harris and Khris Middleton and bigs Brook Lopez, Mason Plumlee and Myles Turner to compete in the world championships.

Before heading to China, Team USA will complete training in Sydney where they’ll play one more exhibition game against Canada prior to the World Cup.