Austin Reaves: Lakers Faced Bucks Challenge ‘Head-On’ Without LeBron James
Austin Reaves, Lakers, Bucks
Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers did the unthinkable on Tuesday night, defeating the Milwaukee Bucks in a thrilling double overtime affair despite LeBron James being out of the lineup. They did so behind stellar performances from Anthony Davis, D’Angelo Russell and Austin Reaves.

Davis’ hounding defense, 34 points and 23 rebounds led the way, but Reaves’ second career triple-double was a massive highlight.

Reaves finished with 29 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists on 10-for-20 from the field in 48 minutes of action. It was arguably one of his best games in three years as a pro, as he coupled it with strong defense on superstar Damian Lillard that held him to 9-for-29 from the field on the night. Reaves is known to step up in big moments, especially when one of the stars is out, but this was a special outing for the young guard.

After the big night, Reaves spoke about what it took for the Lakers to band together and get the win, and what the team’s mentality was going in and after a dismal effort in the first quarter in an interview with Mike Trudell of Spectrum SportsNet:

“There’s two things you can do: you can fold and go to the next to Memphis tomorrow, or you can man up and face the challenge head-on. We had a timeout and we were like, we just got to play fast, get up a bunch of 3s and be solid defensively. Don’t let them get any extra-chance points, limit them to one shot and then on top of that, just be super aggressive.”

Reaves also hit a massive 3-pointer in double overtime that helped secure the victory for the Lakers. And although common sense would dictate that Reaves was at his most tired toward the end of the 48 minutes, he actually felt better at the end than at the beginning:

“To be honest with you, I felt a lot better at that point in the game than I did early in the game. Legs were heavy early, we got off to a horrible start, couldn’t find any momentum anywhere in the game. We just kept plugging and in that moment, the adrenaline takes over, this is an unbelievable atmosphere, obviously a hell of a team and at that point, like I said, the adrenaline takes over and I felt great.”

The Lakers would not have been able to pull off what they did without Reaves’ contributions, and it now sets them up for a much more successful six-game road trip. The Bucks are the best team they face while away from L.A. and they got the win without James. They figure to have James for the remaining five games of the trip as there are no more back-to-backs.

Austin Reaves: being Anthony Davis’ teammate makes life easier

Prior to Davis’ dominant performance against the Bucks, Reaves had already spoken about how much easier Davis makes life for himself and the other Lakers players. Knowing that Davis is going to cover up nearly any defensive mistakes while also going for 30 points and 20 rebounds on any given night lifts a massive weight off of everyone’s shoulders in L.A.

Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!

You May Also Like

Lakers News: Chris Kaman to Return To Dallas November 5

The Lakers first free agent signing after Dwight Howard left the team…

Lakers News: LeBron James ‘Rushed’ Back From Groin Strain Even ‘At The Expense Of Reinjuring Myself’

When LeBron James suffered a groin strain against the Golden State Warriors, there were multiple reports about the severity…

Lakers Owner Jeanie Buss Envisions Team USA Training At UCLA Health TC For 2028 Olympics

Los Angeles Lakers owner Jeanie Buss believes that the new UCLA Health Training Center can serve as a training facility for Team USA in the 2028 Olympics…

Lakers Videos of the Week: Earl Clark, Alley-Oops & Armpit Sweat

With all their bigs out, it’s been a rough week for the…