Austin Reaves sends message to haters after reaching World Cup semi-finals


After Team USA lost against Lithuania during the FIBA World Cup on Sunday, many fans pointed out their players struggles and feared the worst. One of those athletes who had a hard time that night was Lakers star Austin Reaves, who only converted one out of his four shot attempts from the field and committed five fouls in the course of 13 minutes. 

Two days later he contributed to his nation’s 100-63 win against Italy and qualified to the competition’s semi-finals. The Los Angeles player was one of the United States’ top performers off the bench, as he scored 12 points dropping in three out of four field-goals and two out of three beyond the arc.

As the 25-year-old also added four rebounds and three assists to his name, he dedicated a message to all the non-believers who’d lost confidence in his game after the Lithuanian loss.

“You man up, you go watch film and you see the stuff that you didn’t do good — obviously struggled guarding the post,” he said about bouncing back from defeat.

Against Lithuania, rival Vaidas Kariniauskas stuck out his tongue to taunt the Lakers star after scoring in front of him.

“My brother’s boy made a couple good moves. You tip your hat, but at the end of the day, you never lose confidence in what you do as a basketball player, and anybody that tries to make me lose confidence, good luck to ’em,” Reaves said.

After a month playing together as a squad, the shooting guard recognized what a great feeling it has been to come together as a group to represent their country during both the friendly exhibitions and the international tournament.

“It’s been great, and I really didn’t know really how it was going to be. I didn’t know any of the players,” he expressed. “But I actually have been building relationships with some of the guys. And there’s the common goal to just win. I feel like we’ve done a really good job to set egos aside and go play for a greater good. That’s what the coaching staff has preached from Day 1. So it’s been a lot of fun. I think we’ve been playing pretty good. Obviously, some things here and there we can work on. But I like what we have going around now.”

Team USA awaits the winner of this Wednesday’s game between Germany and Latvia for the semi-final clash

As the United States is still waiting to find out who wins between Germany and Latvia this Wednesday, Reaves admits it would be great to face former purple and gold teammate Dennis Schroder once again.

As they already confronted each other in a tune-up contest before the World Cup, the Lakers guard recalled how much he enjoyed facing off against them.

“It was great. Getting to know Dennis really well [on the Lakers], getting to know his competitive spirit, especially when it comes to playing for Germany, I can tell throughout the whole year, just his passion for these kind of events. Playing for his country. So I knew going in that he was going to leave it all on the line. And I didn’t expect anything else,” he said.

Check out the 25-year-old’s best highlights from yesterday’s Quarter Finals clash against Italy:

Reaves can’t wait to find out if he will have to face Schroder once again, but this time in an official competition.

“He’s a super competitor,” he assured. “But just getting to play against him, knowing him, seeing his family after the game, it was cool for me because it’s been since that last Denver game [in the 2023 conference finals] since I’ve seen his little kids. And it was good … we chopped it after the game about life, hoops, all that. It’s always good seeing him, competing against him, because of how big of a competitor he is.”

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