Shaun Livingston Interview
Talented Los Angeles Clippers rookie Shaun Livingston went straight from high school to the pros. His first NBA season, however, has been filled more with injuries than game minutes. The 6-7, 185-pound point guard has participated in just 20 of the team's 72 games played, averaging 5.6 points, 2.3 rebounds and 3.9 assists in 22.8 minutes per game on 38.7% shooting. But don't judge the kid on those stats. His potential is huge, and the future is bright. InsideHoops.com editor Jeff Lenchiner met with Livingston in New Jersey before the start of a recent Clippers-Nets game for an exclusive interview.
InsideHoops.com: Your rookie season was stopped and started by injuries. General question, just talk about dealing with it.
Shaun Livingston: It was disappointing and frustrating, to me. But it's just part of stuff that goes on and stuff that happens, so I really couldn't blame myself and get too down on myself, I had to make the best of the situation.
InsideHoops.com: It's not like you could do anything abuot it, other than focus on getting better and healing.
Shaun Livingston: Exactly. It's all rehab. It's a big part.
InsideHoops.com: Going from high school to the NBA, obviously you needed to get a lot stronger, and you definitely have, and I'm sure you're still going with that. Was it as hard as you expected, or harder, or what?
Shaun Livingston: I expected to do work, but I didn't know what to expect. So that's the way I went in there. It was just going in there and not knowing what to expect; just knowing that I'm going to have to put in the effort.
InsideHoops.com: What have you learned about being an NBA point guard, so far?
Shaun Livingston: Mainly, it's different running a team. You have to be more vocal as a point guard. Youu have to be vocal, you have to be demanding, you have to take care of the ball, you just have to lead, know what I mean? Especially by example.
InsideHoops.com: What rookie on another team has caught your eye this season?
Shaun Livingston: Probably, I'd have to say, Trevor Ariza. I didn't know he was going to come out with a bang like he did. He certainly surprised a lot of people.
InsideHoops.com: He's the surprise of the second round, off the top of my head.
Shaun Livingston: Oh yeah, definitely.
InsideHoops.com: Have you paid attention this season to Portland and Sebastian Telfair? Since you and he were the two point guards to jump from high school.
Shaun Livingston: Can't really worry about other rookies. Yeah, we were the two point guards, but I play my game, we're in different situations, and just trying to make my team better.
InsideHoops.com: What parts of your game right now do you think are truly NBA-ready -- your passing, I'd assume -- and what do you want to work on the most?
Shaun Livingston: Obviously my passing, ball-handing, and my IQ as far as (ready) for the game. Things to work on: my perimeter shooting and my strength.
InsideHoops.com: Have you kept up with the current crop of high school seniors?
Shaun Livingston: Not really, not too much.
InsideHoops.com: Too busy with your own business.
Shaun Livingston: Yeah, it's kind of hard, so.