Lakers’ D’Angelo Russell Gets Honest About Playing…

Lakers’ D’Angelo Russell Gets Honest About Playing With Austin Reaves.

The Los Angeles Lakers lost to the Utah Jazz 132-125 on January 13.

They were without LeBron James, who was sidelined with the ankle ailment that has kept him listed on the injury report for much of the season.

Lakers: Elasticity of D'Angelo Russell, Austin Reaves backcourt - Silver  Screen and Roll

Lakers guard D’Angelo Russell made the most of his first start in seven games in James’ absence, finishing with a season-high 39 points with eight assists (to three turnovers), three rebounds, two blocks, and one steal. He even shot 6-for-11 from beyond the arc, for his most efficient night since December 28.

Teammate Austin Reaves, who re-entered the starting lineup five games ago, finished with 19 points, adding four assists and two rebounds. Asked postgame about the connection he and Reaves showed, Russell was bullish.

“We got a lot of credibility in the short stint that we have together,” Russell told reporters postgame. ”You put us out there, it works.”The loss was the Lakers’ fifth in the last seven tries.

It also snapped their brief, two-game win streak and brought with it the calls from fans for Head Coach Darvin Ham to be fired.

“Obviously, you want to win every game,” Russell said. “But I’m not going to kill myself trying to be Superman or something like that. I think as a group we gotta do it collectively. “Everybody’s got to have an imprint on the game for us to win.”

Austin Reaves, D’Angelo Russell Reunited in Starting Lineup

Reaves and Russell both opened the season as starters in the backcourt. But Ham has made several changes to the starting lineup amid injuries and ineffectiveness, including by the former starting backcourt.

Reaves is averaging more points on a more efficient clip off the bench than as a starter.

Russell, meanwhile, has been more efficient as a reserve where his admitted defensive shortcomings can be minimized. This also comes on the heels of complaints over his usage.

“I get into my flow state in a pick-and-roll when it comes to the game,” Russell said on “The Backyard Podcast” on January 10. “If I miss, y’all took me out the game. Ya’ll just took me out the game if I’m missing if it’s all I’m doing is catching and shooting. But if I’m getting to do what I know I can do … it allows me to get there.”

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