Tag: Tyshawn Taylor

Amir Johnson; Mirza Teletovic; Alan Anderson

The book that helped Shaun Livingston (and maybe saved the Nets’ season)


The Brooklyn Nets started Shaun Livingston for seven of eight games in November when Deron Williams was out injured, and it went pretty poorly.

Livingston shot just 34 percent, and the Nets went 1-6 before replacing him in the starting lineup with Tyshawn Taylor.

That’s when Livingston received Hermann Hesse’s book “Siddhartha” – a tale of a never-ending quest for enlightenment.

Livingston, via Tim Bontemps of the New York Post:

“[Nets basketball operations manager Matt] Riccardi gave it to me,” Livingston said after the Nets’ 108-102 win over the 76ers on Monday. “I was going through [some struggles] in December. … I’m a thinker, and I was in my head. I was struggling, and I was struggling mentally more than anything, and that will carry over to the games.

“That was a great book, man. [It’s about] a guy kind of finding himself. … He had to go through the different experiences to find himself, because he was searching for peace. It was a great book.

“You kind of put yourself in that position where you’re like, ‘That’s me,’ you know?” Livingston said, referring to the book’s main character. “But it kind of just helps on the court, I think. Mentally it kind of stabilizes you. You’re like, ‘All right. Nothing else matters. This is just a game,’ and you take all the pressure out of it.

“What I went through [with the injury] was kind of real life. … This is a game. Now, we get paid to do it, people’s jobs are on the line, you understand that. … I understand the professional part of it, the business part of it. But I get more out of it by thinking about it as a game and something you have fun with.”

Phil Jackson famously gave his players books to read, and although current teams can’t emulate everything that made Jackson a great coach, they can at least do that.

It’s easy to see why Livingston related to the main character.

Livingston been searching for his NBA enlightenment ever since a horrific knee injury in 2007 threatened to end his career. After making a remarkable comeback, Livingston has bounced around the league, playing for the Heat, Thunder, Wizards, Bobcats, Bucks, Wizards (again), Cavaliers and now Nets.

Getting knocked from the starting lineup could have lowered Livingston’s resolve to keep searching. Instead, with “Siddhartha” guiding him, he kept looking.

Livingston got another chance to start when Williams got hurt again, and this time, he’s played much better. He’s shot 47 percent, scored more, rebounded more, gotten more steals and is just generally having his best season since the knee injury. Since returning, Deron Williams has even come off the bench behind Livingston.

Best of all, the Nets are 11-4 in their last 15 games with Livingston starting all of them. He hasn’t singlehandedly turned around their season, but he’s been instrumental. Brooklyn has improved because several small pieces have come together, and without any of them – Livingston’s resurgence included – it’s possible the Nets’ season would have spiraled further into despair.

Is this enlightenment for Livingston? Maybe.

If not, he’ll keep searching.

Pelicans waive Tyshawn Taylor, who was acquired in trade from Nets

tyshawn taylor nets

The Nets made a couple of trades over the weekend, likely aimed at both upgrading their backup point guard position as well as creating an open roster spot.

One of the deals involved sending Tyshawn Taylor to the Pelicans along with cash for the rights to Edin Bavcic, a 29-year old Bosnian big man who was originally drafted back in 2006 by the Raptors, and may or may not ever play in the NBA.

The Pelicans clearly were in that deal for the money and nothing else, as they waived Taylor on Wednesday, according to a report from Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.

The Wizards did something similar earlier this season, when they waived Kendall Marshall and Shannon Brown immediately after acquiring them (along with Marcin Gortat) in a trade with the Phoenix Suns. It’s an interesting way to make moves under the more restrictive collective bargaining agreement, but it can leave fringe players like Taylor (and Marshall before him, before catching on with the injury-ravaged Lakers) in a difficult situation.

Taylor was selected by the Nets in the second round of the 2012 draft, and holds career averages of  2.9 points, 0.9 assists and 0.4 steals in 61 games. He averaged 11.7 minutes per contest in 29 appearances for Brooklyn this season, before falling out of the rotation in mid-December.

Trade is official: Nets get Marquis Teague, Bulls land Tornike Shengalia

Chicago Bulls v Washington Wizards - NBA Global Games Rio 2013

We told you this trade was coming last Friday night, now it is official:

The Chicago Bulls have sent Marquis Teague to the Brooklyn Nets in exchange for Tornike Shengalia, the teams have announced.

What the Bulls get is money — the little-used Shengalia can and will be let go after this season. Teague is owed $1.1 million next season then there are the team option years on his rookie deal after that. The Bulls had thrown in the towel on Teague — Derrick Rose is out for the year but reserve point guard Teague last got on the court for Chicago on Christmas Day (and that was for two minutes). Teague has gotten run in the D-league, that’s about it.

Brooklyn is a fresh start for Teague. He will play behind Deron Williams and if he plays well he will get minutes (allowing more Shaun Livingston next to D-Will), but the Nets are rolling right now and if Teague isn’t performing well he’ll just be sitting on a different bench.

The other part of that trade (a separate deal but tied with the Teague deal) the Nets sent Tyshawn Taylor to New Orleans for cash and the draft rights to Edin Bavcic (who likely never plays in the NBA).

This saves the Nets a little cash the second half of this season, but what it really does is free up a roster spot if the Nets want to use the disabled player exception they got through the Brook Lopez injury. The Nets may not go there but they can if they choose now.