Playing without LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Los Angeles Lakers were projected to lose their third straight game tonight. However, Austin Reaves filled in for the All-Star duo’s absence and carried the Lakers to a huge win against the best team in the league – the Boston Celtics. Following the win, Reaves also revealed that the players were just following the message that LeBron dished out a few nights ago.
Backed by Austin Reaves’ 32-point performance, the Los Angeles Lakers seemed to arguably be a better side than with LeBron James and Anthony Davis in the lineup. Hence, after the incredible win, Reaves was asked to reveal how the Lakers would incorporate the learnings from tonight once LBJ and AD return.
According to the point guard, the team simply followed James’ instructions from a few nights ago. Further, he stressed the fact that the Purple & Gold were competing with intent and putting in the effort, especially on the defensive end.
“If you remember Bron’s quote from the other night ‘go out and do your job’ and I feel like that’s just what we did tonight. It was nothing special, it wasn’t like we were out there running a million set plays. We went out there and competed our ass off, we gave it a 110% on the defensive end,” Reaves said.
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After the LA side’s previous loss against the Atlanta Hawks, the King gave out a blunt instruction to his teammates. According to the 6ft 9” forward, the team would perform better if every player, who takes on the floor, fulfilled their role.
“I don’t have any message for my teammates. Just go out and do your job,” LeBron said.
Apart from scoring the most points for the Lakers, Austin Reaves did a great job as the team’s leader. Even though he only dished out 3 assists, there were numerous moments in the contest when AR exhibited signs of being a true veteran.
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Austin Reaves has been in trade rumor conversations
Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
For the longest time, the team has been rumored to acquire Dejounte Murray from the Atlanta Hawks. Ahead of the February 8 trade deadline, numerous players have been rumored to be a part of the Los Angeles Lakers’ trading block. Austin Reaves is the only player who has constantly been brought up during such conversations.
However, by putting up an outstanding 32-point display against the Boston Celtics, Austin Reaves is proving that he is essential for the Lakers’ success. Skip Bayless, who is known for criticizing players, surprisingly displayed his faith in the 25-year-old.
After the Lakers-Celtics contest, the UNISPUTED analyst revealed how he wasn’t on board with Rob Pelinka and co. parting ways with Reaves. Taking it to X (formerly “Twitter”), Bayless wrote:
And the Lakers should or even would consider giving up Austin Reaves for Dejounte Murray??? STOP IT. AR just scored 32 at Boston on 7-10 threes WITHOUT A TURNOVER. Doesn’t play D like Dejounte, but more valuable. Just knows how to play, fearlessly.
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Austin Reaves has been one of the more impactful players on the Lakers. Despite coming off the bench for many games, the 6ft 5” guard has averaged 15.5 points, 3.9 rebounds, and 5.2 assists. Certainly, the future looks bright for AR. However, LeBron James is not getting any younger. And the Lakers would like to capitalize on James’ twilight years. Hence, it won’t be surprising if they do part ways with Reaves to add Dejounte Murray to the roster.