Los Angeles Lakers fans will be out at the ballpark on Wednesday night when the annual Lakers Night at Dodger Stadium takes place Awith a reversible jersey giveaway. One side will be a Clayton Kershaw Dodgers jersey and the other will be a Magic Johnson Lakers jersey — perfect to wear at a game of either team.
The Dodgers and Lakers have established a strong bond in L.A. They won a championship together in 2020, the first time since 1988, uniting the city in the midst of the pandemic. A parade couldn’t come to fruition, but players from both sides expressed their desire for one.
Lakers Night night at Dodger Stadium is a tradition dating back multiple years. Kobe Bryant threw the first pitch at a Dodgers game in 2000. Since then former and current Lakers have done the same, including Anthony Davis, Josh Hart and Lonzo Ball.
This year, the Lakers player with the honor of throwing the first is a fan favorite in Austin Reaves:
Austin Reaves is throwing out the first pitch for Lakers Night.
— Matthew Moreno (@MMoreno1015) August 19, 2022
Having Reaves throw out the first pitch seems to have been a no-brainer. Last year, the undrafted rookie became a lone bright spot in the Lakers’ disappointing season.
His chemistry with LeBron James was well documented throughout the year, reaching its peak with a viral meme in January. His 7.3 points per game didn’t jump out of the box score, but it was his high IQ and play style that allowed him to succeed alongside James. The two did so well together that the King even declared that Reaves “has something very special.”
Reaves though came back to Earth as the season waned on. He suffered fatigue from the long schedule, prompting former head coach Frank Vogel to rest him for some games.
Reaves has spent the offseason bulking up to avoid that late-season fatigue. Hopefully, that added weight can allow Reaves to throw one right down the middle next Tuesday.
To purchase tickets for Lakers Night at Dodger Stadium and ensure that you watch Reaves throw live, visit Dodgers.com/Lakers. The Laker Girls are also expected to be in attendance, hanging out and greeting fans in the center field plaza.
Austin Reaves looking for a new nickname
A successful tenure with the Lakers will lead to nicknames being made up. For Reaves, those were “Hillbilly Kobe” and “AR-15,” which Reaves first embraced, but is now looking to replace.
Reaves said he doesn’t condone gun violence, therefore, he’s distancing himself from the nickname “AR-15.” He also felt the “Hillbilly Kobe” nickname wasn’t appropriate due to Bryant’s passing.
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