Austin Reaves

Akshita Patel

NBA

Why Austin Reaves Feels His Brief Success With Lakers Is Looked Down By Lot Of Guys In NBA?

Los Angeles Lakers rising sensation, Austin Reaves, had one of the most surreal debuts in the NBA. The undrafted rookie received a promotion out of nowhere as LA went through a crisis mid-tournament. Initially, Reaves came off the bench. However, his effectiveness on the court swayed the purple and gold as they promoted him to starting lineup in no time.

There was no stopping from there for Austin Reaves. The point guard kept on producing awe-inspiring plays and rattled the opposition with aggressive energy. He did more than was asked of him and rightfully earned his reward in the off-season. However, the young basketball sensation is yet to garner respect and acknowledgment from a certain fraction of the NBA.

   

Austin Reaves Claims His Success Is Being Referred To As “Fluke” In NBA

Austin Reaves
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

In just a couple of months into his NBA journey, Laker’s Austin Reaves was labeled as the next big thing waiting to explode by NBA fans and analysts. After all, he had earned it with stellar gameplay in the 2022-23 NBA season. In 63 regular season games, Reaves averaged 13.0 points, 3.4 assists, and 3.0 rebounds per matchup. Moreover, the numbers elevated in playoffs as he scored an average of 16.9 points, 4.6 assists, and 4.4 rebounds per game. Apart from this, the PG’s high basketball IQ and ability to run around to both ends of the court garnered him a lot of praise. Reaves rightfully earned his reward in the postseason as he signed a four-year $53 million extension contract with LA.

What Austin Reaves achieved in such a short span is a dream for many NBA players. However, Reaves is yet to receive the desired respect from a certain fraction of the NBA. In an interview with Los Angeles Times, the point guard said that a lot of people in the NBA still believe that his success with the Lakers was a “fluke.” He is not getting the kind of respect that most established players do. However, the Lakers guard does not mind it as he believes that it is the culture of the NBA. The guard added that he had played all his life as an underdog and had to prove his capabilities constantly. Having said that, the 24-year-old knows who he is. And as long he is true to himself, the importance of outside validation will cease to exist.

Lakers Rising Star Responds On Being Overlooked In NBA For Being “White”

Lakers
Lakers guard Austin Reaves celebrates after making a 54-foot shot ahead of the halftime buzzer in Game 6 of their second-round playoff series against the Golden State Warriors earlier this spring at Crypto.com Arena. Reaves, on Thursday, was officially named to the 12-player Team USA roster for the upcoming 2023 FIBA World Cup. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Lakers guard D’Angelo Russell claimed that Austin Reaves is being overlooked as a player because of his skin color. Russell’s statements shifted the attention back to the debate around the treatment received by white players in NBA. Meanwhile, Reaves came forward to confirm Russell’s claims.

He said that people find it hard to believe that he plays basketball because he does not pass the eye test. Austin Reaves added that while there aren’t many white players in the league, it doesn’t necessarily have to mean that people of his skin color are not capable of making it to the top. But the Lakers guard enjoys the tag of an underdog. He likes to shut the doubters down with his plays on the court.