Every season Shaun Livingston has spent with the Warriors had ended in a trip to the NBA Finals. Now that the three-time champ has returned to Golden State in a front-office role, might that streak resume?
Livingston is just getting started in his new role as director of player affairs and engagement and knows he has plenty to learn as his career shifts away from the court. But as he gets his feet wet, he believes the Warriors’ championship window hasn’t yet come to a close.
In fact, he thinks they can contend for the NBA title for the next handful of seasons.
“It’s hard to say,” Livingston said Tuesday on a conference call with reporters. “It really depends on a lot of factors. Health, what kind of roster, performance, what happens … it’s hard to say. But I can definitely see, within a three to five-year window, it’s still open.”
“It’s a lot of unknowns, a lot of factors,” Livingston continued. “That’s why it’s just more of just putting your head down and just kind of seeing how the group looks now. Where are we at now and how can we get better?”
The Warriors are coming off one of the worst seasons in franchise history, but there are numerous reasons to believe it was an outlier. Steph Curry and Klay Thompson are expected to be at full strength for the start of next season, and with Draymond Green and Andrew Wiggins at the forward spots, Golden State has a core that rivals almost every other team in the league.
Eric Paschall should only continue to improve after being named to the All-Rookie First Team, and with a massive trade exception, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft and the Minnesota Timberwolves‘ top-three protected 2021 first-round pick, the Warriors have several valuable assets with which they could potentially extend the current championship window, or set the foundation for the next one.
The Warriors probably aren’t a true championship contender as currently constructed. But as Livingston insisted, they certainly have the potential to quickly return to that status.