Austin Reaves: Lakers Finishing Season With ‘Must-Win’ Mindset
Austin Reaves, Lakers
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers been a difficult team to figure out during the 2023-24 season. One night, the Lakers look amazing as shown in their recent blowout win against the Atlanta Hawks. Other days, they look out of their depth like their losses to the Sacramento Kings and Golden State Warriors.

With Los Angeles holding onto a slight lead in the standings over Golden State, every game matters for the team if they want to give themselves the best chance at making the postseason.

However, Austin Reaves believes he and Los Angeles are turning a corner and are finding ways to respond after losses, treating every game as a must-win.

“Last week, we had an opportunity when we played Sac twice and Golden State and we didn’t capitalize on those,” Reaves said after practice on Wednesday. “You see kind of how things can change so quick that I think everybody, especially from that Atlanta game the other night, you can tell everybody was locked in on one goal and that was winning. The way we do that is playing the game the right way, so I think the intensity is ratcheting up and we’re kind of in that mindset of must-win.”

Reaves also addressed the Lakers’ inconsistency issues and explained how they could improve in that area down the stretch.

“It’s tough, it’s the NBA,” he said. “There’s a lot of really good teams that do a lot of different things on a night to night basis. So if you do one thing one night really good, then the next team sees what you did really well that night and you got to change.

“But that’s just the beauty of the game, so you just got to be able to change on the fly and read games and situations and win tough games when you don’t play your best basketball. You got to figure out ways to scrap out wins.”

Los Angeles has shown they have the requisite talent to win games against tough competition, but need to prove that they can do it on a regular basis before anyone takes them seriously as a postseason threat.

Quin Snyder reveals advice he gave to Darvin Ham before he took Lakers job

Head coach Darvin Ham was tapped to be the team’s next head coach before the 2022-23 season and faced an uphill challenge for his first time leading a sideline. Hawks head coach Quin Snyder, who worked with Ham previously, revealed the advice he gave him before he took the job.

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