Lakers News: Insider Convinced LA Must Re-Sign Free Agent Austin Reaves
During your Los Angeles Lakers' dominant 122-101 series-clinching win over the Golden State Warriors,
starting shooting guard Austin Reaves submitted his best performance of the matchup
The 6'5" swingman, whom LA signed as an undrafted free agent out of the University of Oklahoma in 2021, scored 23 points on 7-of-12 shooting from the field (4-of-5 from deep) and 5-of-5 shooting from the charity stripe, along with six assists and five rebounds.
Mirjam Swanson of The Orange County Register is now more convinced than ever that LA absolutely needs to re-sign the second-year wing, who will be a restricted free agent this summer.
As Swanson notes, LA president of basketball operations Rob Pelinka successfully improved the Lakers from a 13th seed in January to a Western Conference Finals berth in May, and clearly has a keen eye for team building.
That said, Swanson is convinced now more than ever that Reaves needs to be a Laker next year, and for many years to come.
Given his restricted free agency, LA will be able to match any offer tendered to Reaves this year.
The most another club can offer him is $11.4 million in his first season, while LA can pay him up to $11.9 million as a starting salary.
In the last two seasons of a four-year deal, thanks to the Arenas Rule, rival clubs with cap space now could still offer to pay Reaves up to a maximum contract worth in the neighborhood of $36-38 million.
Though Swanson is skeptical a club will go quite that far, she believes a an overpay for Reaves is on the table from a rival franchise this offseason.