Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Player Introduction: Shaun Livingston

Shaun Livingston is currently the tallest point guard in the NBA, standing at six feet, seven inches tall. He is a pass-first point guard, even with that huge height advantage. He signed a one-year, veterans minimum deal with the Nets this offseason, even though he admittedly had more lucrative offers on the table. With the departure of C.J. Watson to Indiana, Livingston will now serve as the Nets' backup point guard.

When Livingston entered the 2004 draft, he was looked at as a player with a very high ceiling, but needed development. He was taken fourth overall by the Los Angeles Clippers. He was on his way to being a potential superstar in the league when it happened. When I say "it," I mean the injury that could have cost him his career (Video is graphic. Viewer discretion is advised). In a game against the Charlotte Bobcats in 2007, Livingston tore his ACL, PCL, and the lateral meniscus, badly sprained his MCL, and dislocated his patella and his tibia-femoral joint. 

Since the injury, Livingston has struggled to find a home in the NBA. He has bounced around from team to team quite a bit and has had a hard time staying completely healthy. In 2012-13, he played a combined 66 games with the Washington Wizards and Cleveland Cavaliers and averaged 6.3 points, 3.3 assists, and 2.4 rebounds per game. 

His role with Brooklyn is simple. Back up Deron Williams and help lead that strong second unit that the Nets possess. His ability to share the ball with his teammates will allow him to fit nicely with guys like Jason Terry and Andray Blatche coming off the bench with him.

Something that can be a key to Livingston being the solid backup point guard that the Nets expect him to be is that his head coach, Jason Kidd, is one of the greatest point guards to ever play the game of basketball. Livingston will have a chance to learn from the best while also playing behind one of the top point guards in the NBA today, Deron Williams. 

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