Austin Reaves and LeBron James always had each other’s backs. Since his time in NBA, James has taken a lot of youngsters under his wing in his twenty years. With Anthony Davis, the King won the championship for the LA side in 2020. And after three years, it is Austin Reaves who is playing alongside the King. AR has really blossomed into a great player coming to his second season in NBA.
The Lakers were in deep trouble in the regular season. They did not look like having a chance to make the postseason. But they did it anyway. And the main reason for the turnaround is Anthony Davis. But he could not have done it alone. It was Austin Reaves, an emerging star of the Lakers, who provided quality support to AD in the absence of King James.
LeBron James Has Always Been In Awe Of AR’s Basketball IQ
After witnessing Reaves’ crazy performances recently, LeBron James acknowledged, “I’m impressed with AR’s high basketball IQ.” Austin Reaves is playing in his first NBA Playoffs and has done exceedingly well. He helped the Lakers pull off an upset against the Grizzlies in Game 1 of the playoff series. Reaves scored 23 points in that game. LeBron James even asserted that he knew AR would get his break in the starting lineup soon after he saw the young man in practice.
To James added, athleticism does not mean the most. What matters is how well a player can shoot the ball. How high can he jump? And how fast can he run? These are more important to LeBron James. The 4-time All-Star said that players who know how to win championships really matter the most. LeBron James always liked players with brilliant skills to play the game of basketball. And Austin Reaves has proved himself to be a player of that caliber. He had scored another 23 points in Game 4 against the Grizzlies. Hence, the inclusion of Reaves in the starting lineup was essential for the Lakers to progress in the playoffs.
Will Austin Reaves Stay In Lakers After Offseason?
Despite showing off amazing gameplay, Austin Reaves is going to be a free agent during the offseason. There will be many teams showing interest in signing him. The Lakers can offer AR $50.8 million for four years only. He can even demand the deal to go up to $99 million for four years. Then the Lakers might lose him if some other team matches AR’s demand. However, the Lakers faithful would want Austin Reaves to stick around and let the Lakers build a team around him for the future.
Last night, the Lakers beat the Grizzlies at home to clinch the series 4-2. It is quite extraordinary to see the Lakers progress like this when the same team was on the verge of missing out on a consecutive postseason just a few weeks ago. Now, in the next round, the Lakers will face the winner of the series between the Kings and the Warriors. That series is currently poised at 3-3 moving on to Game 7. Only time will tell if NBA fans will see a clash between LeBron James and Stephen Curry in the next round of the playoffs.