Shaun Livingston dunks again

Shaun Livingston faced his demons and won phase one of his struggles.

Now time to shine.

Shaun Livingston was one of the players I use when I play NBA Live. I don’t remember what was that year (06 or 07) but I like to use the Clips because they have two big time bigs that plays in the low post (Elton Brand and Chris Kaman), two slashers (Corey Maggette and Cuttino Mobley), and a point in Sam Cassell. I don’t really like hitting long balls so my basic attack is either work the post or dribble penetration. Cassell barely fits that because he can’t dunk. That’s why I like to use Livingston. I’ll sacrifice outside shooting anytime for and 1’s. In real life though, I doubt if I’d even be interested in him. He is error prone and injury prone… plus his stats are inconsistent.

Is he a bust?

Actually, if you look at his stats, he is in that area. He was 19 when the eagerness to play in the NBA bit him. He was selected fourth by the Los Angeles Clippers in the 2004 Draft. The draft was a great class that saw Orlando’s Dwight Howard getting picked first, and then followed by UConn teammates Emeka Okafor (picked by Charlotte) and Ben Gordon (picked by Chicago). Amongst the notables picked in the first round were Dallas’ Devin Harris at the fifth spot (now a Net), Chicago’s Luol Deng at number seven, Philly’s Andre Igoudala at number nine, Boston’s Al Jefferson at 15 (now with Minnesota), Atlanta’s Josh Smith (#17), New Orleans’ J.R. Smith (#18 – now with Denver), Orlando’s Jameer Nelson (#20), Sacramento’s Kevin Martin (#26 – now with Houston), and the Lakers’ Sasha Vujacic (#27). The second round notables were Cleveland’s Anderson Varejao and New York’s Trevor Ariza (now a Rocket). Left undrafted were current King Andres Nocioni and current Timberwolf Damien Wilkins.

See how stacked is this group?

Actually Livingston was ready to sign for Duke University until scouts thought he was merely wasting his time in college hoops. In reality, injures forced to be sidelined almost all the time. His scoring high was when he normed a 9.3ppg clip during his third year. He was about to claim a breakout season until February 26, 2007 came.

Remember this? A dumb person’s concern on this video is “Wow, he babied the lay-up and missed it”.

You’re an idiot if you said this.

The concern here is that a player of his potential is looming as a draft bust because of this very bad circumstance.

After the injury Shaun had a season to rest but he was eventually not re-signed by the Clips. The Clips took bold steps and chose players that could help them but they have yet to materialize playoff seedings. Hell, I even thought they got cursed for their insensitivity with the way Blake Griffin’s rookie season unfolded. Anyway, on June of 2008, Livingston got the green light to play ball and he picked the Miami Heat as the team to try to re-start his career on October 3, 2008. He played sparingly for the Heat, getting 2.3ppg in 10 minutes. He was traded to the Memphis Grizzlies on January 7 where he was instantly waived. Then he found himself in an unfamiliar territory – which was the Tulsa 66ers of the D-League where after three weeks, he found himself signing a multi-year deal with the Oklahoma City Thunder. With all the thoughts of him providing steady backup for Russell Westbrook, those thoughts were dashed after the Thunder waived him on December of 2009. Two months later, the Washington Wizards offered a 10-day contract for Livingston. That contract was renewed and afterwards, he got a contract to play for the Wizards until the remainder of the season.

On March 23’s game, this happened.

Shaun had nine points, six assists, three rebounds and a steal in 24 minutes of action. The Wizards lost against the Charlotte Bobcats, the same team that Livingston faced when the freak accident happened. It may be less than stellar but it should amount to something. This is all baby steps for Shaun. At 24, he has a lot to prove and the great thing here is that Livingston wants to improve.

Washington is such a talent-starved team. With all the controversies surrounding Gilbert Arenas and with the Wizards’ roster disbandment, this is a perfect time for Livingston to shine.

He was seen as a superstar.

He now has to prove to the world that he is.

Game over.


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