Shaun Livingston officially retires from the NBA after a 15-year career. During his time in the NBA, Livingston was a solid role player, putting up a solid 6.3 points-per-game, three assists-per-game, on 48.6 percent shooting.
After being selected fourth overall in the 2004 NBA draft, Livingston went on to be a key player for the Los Angeles Clippers. He played 27.2 minutes-per-game during the three seasons he played there. During his tenure with the Clippers, the team had one of their best seasons ever with a 47-35 record during the 2005-06 season.
Shaun Livingston’s Journey Before Retirement
Sadly, Livingston suffered injuries throughout his career. On February 26, 2007, he suffered one of the worst injuries the NBA has ever seen. Tore his ACL, PCL, and lateral meniscus, while badly spraining his MCL. After being reviewed by a medical professional, Livingston was told he might have to have his leg amputated.
Livingston tried to stay in the NBA, becoming a journeyman who couldn’t stick with one team. After playing for seven teams in four years, Livingston signed with the Brooklyn Nets. During his time in Brooklyn, Livingston was determined to show the world he could still contribute on the court. He played a career-high 76 games that season and earned the third-most minutes on the team.
The Golden Age
Coming off a good season with the Brooklyn Nets, Livingston signed a three-year deal with the Golden State Warriors. He would become their backup point guard after star player Stephen Curry. Livingston would play a vital role in the Warriors championship that year. He averaged five points-per-game on 53 percent shooting during the playoffs. The next season, he would help the Warriors surpass the 72-10 record set by the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls.
During this time, Livingston was beginning to regain some of his lost fame. The Warriors had become the new NBA powerhouse, and Livingston was getting credit for being one of the better bench players on the Warriors. Although Livingston may not have fit the modern point guard skill set, he still played a vital role in the Warriors success. Livingston used his mid-range shot to catch defenders off-guard. In his last three seasons with the Warriors, he helped the team make it to the finals three times in a row. During those two seasons, they won two championships and established themselves as a historic dynasty in the process.
What it Means Now That Shaun Livingston is Retired
View this post on Instagram
After 15 years in the NBA, I’m excited, sad, fortunate and grateful all in one breath. Hard to put into a caption all of the emotions it takes to try and accomplish your dreams. I wasn’t supposed to be here. Anybody that has beat the odds understands the mental and emotional strain it takes to inspire yourself on an uphill war, let alone inspire others. “The injury” gave me a chance to find and prove to myself (and the world) that I wouldn’t be defined by my circumstances. With my time in the League what I will be most proud of is the fact that my character, values and faith were tested, and I persevered. To my pops that told me to “go get the big ball” I THANK YOU. To my Grandpa that always showed me there was more to life than basketball I THANK YOU. To my Uncles that helped raise me like I was one of their own, THANK YOU. To my wife and kids…the future IS BRIGHTER than our past, and I couldn’t see myself taking on this chapter without you. To all of my teammates, coaches, TRAINERS, staff, my journey is a collection of experiences, and those of you that helped me along the way, THANK YOU! To all the fans and anybody else that inspired me, supported me, cheered for me, or even said good words about me, THANK YOU. “The greatest gift we can give is service to others” #Raiseaglass 🍷
Now that Livingston is retired, he will be remembered for more many things. He was a tough player who overcame many obstacles, mentally and physically. Having the strength to keep trying, to keep pushing. Most people would give up if they were in his situation. They wouldn’t want to risk getting hurt again. But Shaun kept trying, and it paid off to the highest degree. He went from a journeyman who was told he might never walk again to a critical contributor for a championship team. Shaun Livingston may not have been the flashiest player in the world, but he was undoubtedly one of the most inspirational. His story will be known for a long time.
Embed from Getty Images