Did the Lakers Finesse Austin Reaves by Paying Him Less Than 100+ NBA Stars?

Published 09/01/2023, 1:09 PM EDT

Follow Us

USA Today via Reuters

Austin Reaves has been sensational this year. After entering as an undrafted player in the NBA, he didn’t take long to spread his name. The Guard’s fan following is now building speedily and his popularity has captured the global imagination. Of course, playing with LeBron James helps in the popularity index, and to top it off the exposure as a Lakers player. The Lakers could make a Conference Finals appearance, thanks to Reaves going off in the Postseason.

America’s Favorite Video Today

After his resounding FIBA World Cup success, how does his four-year $54 million contract look?

Lakers are working within limited means

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

The Lakers are going to have two huge contracts in their book. They recently gave Anthony Davis a mega extension, which is going to cost them over $60 million a year. LeBron James’ contract is going to cost them around $50 million in the upcoming window. If LBJ nabs another contract with the Lakers, it will be close to or perhaps over what AD is going to get paid.

Therefore, the Lakers will have to work around some smart deals. And they did so in the latest offseason. They could have saved more with the Reaves deal had they given him a three-year minimum deal to begin with. However, his unprecedented rise has led Purple & Gold to spend around $12-14 million a year on him.

Trending

Get instantly notified of the hottest NBA stories via Google! Click on Follow Us and Tap the Blue Star.

Follow Us

In the long term, it is more than a bargain. He is the 130th player in terms of contract value. Richaun Holmes and Devonte Graham, who are around the same range, disappeared from the main rotations of their team. His own teammate Rui Hachimura has a deal that pays him as much as $3 million more than the rising star. His averages were below the Guard for most parts and has a lesser role than him.

For someone who played 36 minutes per game in the postseason and averaged 17 points, the contract is indeed looking like a steal for the Lakers.

Has Reaves’ value increased even more during the ongoing WC campaign?

Reaves’ hot summer

After a prolific NBA season, the Guard has carried the form to the World Cup. While his shooting is well known, his driving game has been developing at a rapid rate. In the last fixture against Montenegro, he had 11 attempts from the free-throw line and made nine of them. He has also averaged over 2 steals a game.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

He has been the second-highest scorer, number one in steals, and second in assists per game for Team USA.

5 Days After Major Kobe Bryant Honor, Ex-Laker Snubs LeBron James Only to Put 62 YO Lakers Legend Next in Line

These stats are coming when the Guard is playing amidst All-Star-level players. It showcases how much he has developed this year. In his fourth year of the $54 million contract, he will have a player option. If he develops at the current rate, he can command a huge contract.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Let’s see if he is consistent enough in the long run.

Watch This Story: New Twist Fuels LeBron James-Dillon Brooks Rivalry: Sixers Legend Charles Barkley Credits X Factor Behind Lakers Billionaire’s Dominance

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

ADVERTISEMENT

Written by:

Shubham Singh

512Articles

One take at a time

Shubham is an NBA Writer at Essentially Sports. He became a fan of the NBA in late 2000s and his interest skyrocketed after Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks upset the Miami Heat in Six Games during 2011 NBA Finals. He loves looking into playing styles of different players and teams while also trying to analyse what circumstances shape a typical NBA game.
Show More>

Edited by:

Saumya Khanduja

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

EDITORS' PICK

America’s Favorite Video Today