Austin Reaves claps back at Mikal Bridges after Nets star calls him ‘too little’

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read

Los Angeles Lakers guard Austin Reaves fired back at Brooklyn Nets star Mikal Bridges for saying that he’s too small to guard him.

Bridges and Reaves are currently teammates on Team USA as it prepares for the 2023 FIBA World Cup. Bridges posted an image of Reaves guarding him on Instagram, calling the Lakers guard “too little.”

Austin Reaves and Mikal Bridges

Reaves wasn’t going to let his teammate get away with the jab, even if it was in a joking manner.

The Arkansas native has been really solid for Team USA this summer, thriving in a bench role.

He recently received a shout-out from former Lakers and current Washington Wizards forward Kyle Kuzma on social media for his play in an exhibition game against Spain.

In the 2022-23 season, which was Reaves’ second in the NBA, the young guard turned a lot of heads with his play. He averaged 13.0 points, 3.0 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game while shooting 52.9 percent from the field and 39.8 percent from beyond the arc, improving mightily from his rookie season.

The former undrafted free agent averaged just 7.3 points per game while shooting 45.9 percent from the field and 31.7 percent from 3-point range in the 2021-22 season.

Reaves’ play last season earned him a new four-year deal with the Lakers this offseason, making him a key part of the team’s core for years to come. The invite to play with Team USA further showed how respected Reaves has become in the NBA.

The Lakers, with the help of some strong play from Reaves, knocked off the Memphis Grizzlies and Golden State Warriors to get to the Western Conference Finals last season despite being just the No. 7 seed in the West.

In the playoffs, Reaves averaged 16.9 points, 4.4 rebounds and 4.6 assists per game in 16 games while shooting 46.4 percent from the field and 44.3 percent from 3-point range. The Lakers are hoping he can build on that performance to help the team make a deeper playoff run in the 2023-24 season.

Lakers fans have to love that the young guard is getting the experience of matching up with players like Bridges on a regular basis this offseason. That should help Reaves hit the ground running for Los Angeles when the 2023-24 season kicks off later this year.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.