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You Tube Gold: Almost Great Randy Livingston

A prodigy with dreadful knees

Rockets V Bulls
Randy Livingston, with the Houston Rockets, trying to guard Michael Jordan in the NBA.

It’s hard to overstate how heavily pursued Randy Livingston was in high school. He was a two-time high school Player of the Year and the #1 recruit in 1992.

He seemed on a sure path to greatness.

Then his knees intervened.

He had serious knee problems at LSU and only appeared in 32 games. He opted for the draft after his sophomore year but was damaged goods by then and was drafted 42nd. He bounced around between the league and the early G-League (then known as the D-League) for about a decade.

It just goes to show you that even the most talented players aren't guaranteed anything.

And it should show that there are other paths. Although his playing career didn’t work out, he has been a scout, consultant and coach. He seems to be living a decent life and we’re sure he’s long since made peace with his body failing him. He’s not the first to experience that and he won't be the last.

If anything, it should underscore the importance of education. Today a lot of kids can get drafted after their freshman years but if you don't stick around, the money won't last for long. It’s important to have a backup, whatever it is.

Here’s a documentary from his glory days when everything seemed possible and tantalizingly close.