On the same day that Kevin Durant announced he was signing with the Golden State Warriors, the team also made a decision to bring back a critical piece in their success for the past two seasons.
The Undefeated first reported that the Warriors would retain Livingston and his $5.8 million for next season became fully guaranteed.
There was some speculation that Livingston might be moved to make room for Durant’s contract, but Andrew Bogut was the only player on the roster traded to free up space.
At $5.8 million, Livingston is a huge bargain. With the amount of money being thrown at point guards this offseason so far, a 6’7’’ point guard who can cover 3 positions on defense, orchestrate the offense, back down smaller guards, and hit midrange jumpers with incredible accuracy only encompassing $5.8 million on the payroll is outstanding.
Livingston is a great teammate as well, and fans should be ecstatic that he didn’t end up as a cap casualty in the pursuit of Durant.
Although the Warriors didn’t inform Livingston of their intention to keep him until today, they had previously decided to keep him regardless of whether or not Durant chose to sign with the Warriors.
This makes sense, especially when it became clear that the Warriors wouldn’t have to shed any contracts besides Bogut’s to bring Durant in.
Livingston’s importance to the team can’t be understated, and the only way it would have made sense not to retain him was if it impeded their ability to sign Durant.
It’s a shame that Bogut had to be traded, but the Warriors accomplished the Durant acquisition with as little collateral damage to the roster as possible.
Yes they lost Bogut, Harrison Barnes, and likely the rest of their impending free agents, but Andre Iguodala and Livingston will be back to lead an altered second unit.
Those two have the talent of starters, and Livingston returning is a sigh of relief to fans of this team.