The combo guard has made his way back from devastating injuries to revitalise his career.
The moment must be sweet for Shaun Livingston. Signing a 3-year, $16 million deal with the Golden State Warriors represents the culmination of years of hard work. The work to be done was the recovery from a truly horrific injury, the type one never wishes to see anyone suffer.
While playing for the L.A. Clippers in 2007, the team who drafted him with the number 4 overall pick in 2004, Livingston almost literally snapped his leg in half, suffering injuries to all the major ligaments in his leg, while also tearing his tearing his meniscus and dislocating his knee cap.
Livingston’s injury cost him about a year and half of his career and then he spent the next 5 seasons bouncing around the league, attempting, and mostly failing, to establish himself as an NBA regular. He played for 7 separate teams in this period, before finally landing in Brooklyn at the start of last season.
Here Livingston rejuvenated his career. Playing the most minutes per game since the season of his injury, Livingston thrived in Brooklyn, making the most of Jason Kidd’s inverse style offence that saw his large guards, Livingston and Deron Williams, frequently post up, utilizing their unique combination of size. Livingston shone in this role, quickly establishing himself as one of the best post players in the league.
After his year of success it’s unsurprising that he attracted attention on the free agency market, and Golden State will be great fit for Livingston who can instantly add a new dimension to the Warriors offence, as well as contributing to their defence, something that will suit the Warriors given Steph Curry’s deficiencies on that end of the floor.
$16 million over 3 years may be a slight over estimation of Livingston’s ability but one can see why the Warriors were willing to fork out when one considers their struggles with finding a solid back up to Curry.
And in any case, it’s impossible to begrudge Livingston a pay day when one considers the hardship he’s endured and work he’s put in to earn this contract.