As one of the leaders of the bench unit, Shaun Livingston has played a crucial role for the Warriors all season long. Using data-driven analyses and graphics provided by MOCAP Analytics, here’s a closer look at his game.
Length, fluidity and versatility - these words describe several Warriors players, Klay Thompson, Andre Iguodala and Harrison Barnes to name a few. But perhaps no player epitomizes those traits as well as Shaun Livingston, a 6'7" point guard that can lead the offense, loves to operate from the mid-post, moves well without the ball, and uses his physical advantages to wreak havoc on the defensive end. One of the most fascinating stories to watch this postseason will be how the coaching staff strategically uses Livingston off the bench to create favorable matchups. Using data-driven analyses and graphics provided by MOCAP Analytics, here’s a closer look at Livingston’s game.
Offensive Strength: He's a Point...and a Post
In what may be the golden era of point guards, one skill that’s becoming harder to find among guards is back-to-the-basket playmaking. Shaun Livingston, however, is an exception. With the ball in his hands in the mid-post, Livingston is able to raise up for a turnaround jumper over smaller guards as he does here:
Alternatively, against larger defenders, Shaun possesses the mobility to get all the way to the rim:
And if the defense decides to send a double team, he’s adept at finding the open teammate:
Defensive Strength: The Epitome of Dubs 'D'
Livingston is a great help defender with active hands. His excellent anticipation and footwork, combined with his 7’ wingspan, allow him to make some spectacular defensive plays. Here he does a great job of staying engaged on the weak side, leaving his man at the opportune moment to intercept the pass intended for Gibson:
Good Chemistry: From East to West, and Now With the Best
Since Livingston isn’t a prolific three-point shooter, Steve Kerr likes to preserve the floor spacing by surrounding him with shooters, such as Marreese Speights. Livingston and Speights were teammates in Cleveland, and clearly it hasn’t taken long for them to revive their chemistry in Golden State.
Similar Offensive Styles: Flipping the Scripts
One is 6'2", 200 lbs, the other is 6'7", 192. They may not be able to share a wardrobe, but Andre Miller and Shaun Livingston do share similar offensive strengths and tendencies. These veteran point guards are throwbacks with mid-range games and post moves, who seldom shoot from behind the three-point arc. They allow their teams to invert the action and run offensive sets through guards in the post.
Please post your comments below and feel free to let us know what other kinds of data-driven content you’d like to see in the future. You can also follow MOCAP Analytics on Twitter and Instagram at @mocapanalytics.