Next up in our 2017 free agent target series is Shaun Livingston of the Golden State Warriors. Livingston, 30, is set to become a free agent after the 2016-17 season. Livingston had a previous short stint with the Brooklyn Nets.
It wasn’t that long ago, during the 2013-14 season, to be exact, that Shaun Livingston played for the Brooklyn Nets. He started 54 games, averaging 8.3 points in 26 minutes per game. After the season, Livingston departed to the Golden State Warriors, and has since became a key role player in their success.
When Livingston came into the NBA in 2004, he was a player that many basketball spectators were excited about. After he turned down a scholarship offer from Duke, he declared for the NBA and the Clippers took him with the fourth overall pick in the draft out of high school. At 6’7, he towered over other NBA point guards. But he also possessed the quickness of other smaller guards. Livingston’s court vision, passing instincts and ability that couldn’t be taught. Maybe he would develop a three-point shot, but if not, he still had a unique and fascinating skill set.
Livingston tore his ACL, PCL, MCL, and meniscus and dislocated his knee. There was legitimate concern around the league that his leg would have to be amputated and his career would be over. It took months for him to learn how to walk again.
Livingston has played on nine teams in 10 years, but this match may be unlikely for a few reasons, but there is reason to consider it from the Brooklyn Nets’ perspective as well. He played for the Brooklyn Nets during the 2013-14 season.
First, the Warriors don’t seem inclined to let Livingston go, as he was one of the few players they chose to bring back after the roster exodus due to Kevin Durant‘s signing. Next, Livingston fits really well in the Warriors’ system, and has enjoyed a great deal of success. However, it may be tougher next season for Golden State to retain Livingston, as Kevin Durant will opt out for a new max, and Stephen Curry will get a massive max deal as well.
This year, the Brooklyn Nets are going with Randy Foye as the veteran presence who figures to see time at both guard spots. That’s a role Livingston could fill nicely in 2017, or he could start when necessary. Brooklyn brought Livingston in at a time when his future was far less-certain than it is now. Livingston is now an NBA champion, but a Brooklyn reunion could benefit the Nets in 2017.
2017 may be a bit soon to expect the Brooklyn Nets to be players for major free agents. Players such as Blake Griffin and Stephen Curry will be available next offseason. Curry, in what is a foregone conclusion, is going back to the Warriors. Griffin has been in trade rumors as he battles a leg injury. The point being that none of the big names will be in play for the Nets next year. But the Brooklyn Nets can still find impact pieces next year, and that’s what Sean Marks and his team will set out to do.