Austin Reaves expresses desire to work out new deal with Lakers and stay in L.A. for entire career

Jason Simpson
3 Min Read

Against all odds, Los Angeles Lakers sophomore Austin Reaves has become an irreplaceable part of the team’s success.

The Lakers rolled the dice on the undrafted guard in a low-risk, high-reward move, and the results have been phenomenal. It’s hard to imagine where the team would be without the 24-year-old currently.

Reaves is young and promising enough to be part of L.A.’s long-term plans, but since he’s set to hit restricted free agency this offseason, his future is a little murky right now. Some Lakers fans have been stressing out about whether or not his days with the team are numbered.

Fortunately, Reaves is making it clear that the Lakers organization is where he wants to be.

“I wanna be a Laker,” Reaves said. “Obviously, they gave me the first opportunity. I was a huge Laker fan growing up, big Kobe [Bryant] fan, so honestly, just to be able to play for the Lakers organization is special, and I wanna be a Laker, so hopefully we can get this done, and I can stay there for hopefully my whole career.”

In the 2022-23 regular season, Reaves 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.

He was particularly impressive over his final 13 games, averaging nearly 20 points per game during that stretch. He earned starts in his final 10 appearances of the regular season.

Some fans believe that the postseason is when stars are born, which is worth noting because Reaves will certainly have a chance to add to his resume in the coming days and weeks. With the Lakers heading to the play-in tournament this week and potentially a playoff series after that, the second-year guard will get an opportunity to show what type of player he is when the lights are the brightest.

One has to imagine that there are plenty of teams eyeing Reaves already as the offseason approaches, but the Lakers will surely try very hard to keep him. It helps that he seems happy in Los Angeles and clearly loves being part of the Lakers organization.

For now, Reaves’ focus is surely locked on L.A.’s upcoming game against the Minnesota Timberwolves in the play-in tournament. The Lakers are one win away from officially locking down a spot in a playoff series.

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Jason is excited about the LeBron James era of Lakers basketball and hopes that the end result will be multiple championships.