Shaun Livingston will hit the free agency market next summer. He could return to the eastern conference and help the Boston Celtics get over the proverbial hump.
The Golden State Warriors have made it publicly clear that the team intends to keep Livingston for all of next season. In the aftermath of the Kevin Durant acquisition, the 6-foot-7 combo guard is expected to provide stability and continuity off the bench.
But like any role player caught in the middle of a roster transition, Livingston’s value to the team could diminish once Durant gets acclimatized with Steve Kerr’s offensive and defensive schemes. The Warriors may not be so eager to keep him beyond next season, NBC Sports speculated.
His stint with the Dubs has reinvigorated his career. If the team manages to win another championship next season, he would have more reasons to leave.
For one, he would have doubled his ring tally. As a role player in the NBA, there would be nothing left for him to aspire for, maybe except collecting the biggest possible paycheck while he is still in the league.
Another reason is that the cap-stricken Warriors may not have enough leeway to sign him to a reasonable extension. Next summer, the Dubs will be busy re-signing Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant to max deals. That is if the latter opts out of his current contract to sign a more lucrative deal.
Livingston should start weighing his options. At 31 years old, next summer might be his last chance to be a top-ranked free agent.
The Boston Celtics would make sense for him as players like Amir Johnson, Jonas Jerebko and Kelly Olynyk will be off the books in 2017. The Celtics will have more than enough cap room to bring in Livingston.
Hoops Habit indicated that the Celtics bench is not impressive. Youngsters Marcus Smart and Terry Rozier have both showed potential, but the Celtics are in win-now mode. Livingston would add composure and championship experience to a team that hasn’t won the Larry O’Brien Trophy since 2008.