Shaun Livingston's long road
Old 10-27-2008, 02:51 PM   #1 (permalink)

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Shaun Livingston's long road

I'm pulling for the kid. I don't think he'll ever be the same player he could've been prior to the injury, but if he works hard he could be a serviceable journeyman type of player.


MIAMI - There is one factor keeping the Heat's point guard rotation from early season clarity. Shaun Livingston, possibly a key component, is still fighting to regain his old form.

Livingston's NBA career nearly ended when he tore the ACL, PCL and MCL in his left knee in a gruesome post-layup fall in February of 2007.

After his first exhibition season since the injury, Livingston says he's encouraged, but parts of his game will still be absent when his first season with the Heat begins Wednesday. Slowly, he is inching toward the athleticism that made him the fourth overall draft pick by the Clippers in 2004.

"I don't have the same explosive ability I had before, where I could just get to the rim and finish," Livingston said. "[Improving] that jumping is where it's at for me right now, jumping, elevating, being able to rise over. Layups will be the biggest work-in-progress. One-leg jumps, one-leg dunks, to the rim, that is the stuff I had before, and I've got to take my time getting it back."

Livingston said Sunday that his game will change until he's back to what he once was. He will rely on pull-up jumpers, use his 6-foot-7 size to draw double teams and use kickout passes.

"Defense is going to be the hardest part for me it's all reaction, it's all instinctive, the signals have to come fast, I can't say, 'all right, leg, let's go,'" Livingston said.

For Livingston, encouragement came Thursday and Friday, when he played on consecutive nights and felt good. There was no swelling and just normal soreness. He is aided by a large brace on his left knee that stabilizes as well as annoys. Joking that he only weighs "100 pounds soaking wet", the slim Livingston called the brace "a third leg" and said it might slow him down. He will wear the brace all year, until he feels normal again.

It's unclear how Livingston, 23, will mesh into the crowded point-guard situation with Chris Quinn, rookie Mario Chalmers and Marcus Banks. Livingston could get caught up in an early season numbers game,5161645.story
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Old 10-27-2008, 02:53 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I hope he makes it back all the way...good kid.
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Old 10-27-2008, 03:29 PM   #3 (permalink)

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It sucks because if he was healthy he'd be a shoe in to start on that team. Hopefully he can have an Amare type rehab where hes back and ready to go by 2009
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Old 10-27-2008, 05:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Magic was his size, played PG and never relied on off the chart atheticism. This might make him an even better player than he would have been...

Regardless as long as he's in Miami he'll always be second to Chris Quinn.
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