When people talk about the moves that the Brooklyn Nets have made over the NBA off-season, there are some obvious ones that come to mind. Clearly adding Paul Pierce, Jason Terry, Kevin Garnett and Andrei Kirlenko to an already talent-laden roster elevates the Nets to an entire other level than they were at last season.
However, it may be another less-blockbuster signing from this off-season that has one of the biggest impact on Brooklyn in the upcoming season. That player is Shaun Livingston, who is likely to be the Nets backup point guard for the 2013-2014 season.
Last season, Livingston had a little bit of comeback year once he joined the Cleveland Cavaliers. In 49 games with the Cavs last year he averaged 7.2 points, 3.6 assists, 2.5 boards and 0.8 steals in 23.2 minutes per game while shooting a solid 50.7 percent from the field. Considering that people a knee injury once left Livingston’s future in the league in question, he’s really become quite a redemptive story.
However, it’s how he fits with this Nets team that makes him such an interesting prospect coming into this season. Last year with Brooklyn, C.J. Watson played the majority of the minutes in the reserve point guard role. Though Watson is a far better shooter than Livingston, he’s also wildly more inconsistent.
What Livingston will bring to the table that Watson did not is more of a leader and floor general off of the bench rather than just another scorer. If Deron Williams needs a rest or is injured, it won’t be a worry about what the backup is going to give you with Livingston in-house. Ultimately, having Livingston could be hugely beneficial to the Nets and could help propel them to that next level that everyone expects them to be at in the upcoming season.