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Leonardo Barbosa, Shaun Livingston Choose to Remain in Basketball

Two former Golden State Warriors may be done with their playing days, but they are not ready to leave the sport of basketball behind.

On Monday, former NBA Sixth Man of the Year, Leonardo Barbosa announced he was ready to retire from the game of basketball and transition into a coaching role with the Golden State Warriors franchise. The 37 year old guard last played in the Brazilian league and hasn’t suited up for an NBA team since the 2016-17 season.

The Brazilian Blur spent three seasons with the Warriors as a player, helping Golden State win its first NBA championship in 40 years. He also had three separate stints with the Phoenix Suns and spent a couple of seasons with the Toronto Raptors. During his 14-year career, Barbosa averaged 10.6 points per game, primarily as a sixth man.

Meanwhile, Shaun Livingston, who retired from the game a year ago has also transitioned into a role with the Warriors.

After making an incredible comeback to the game following a serious knee injury, Livingston found an ideal leadership role in Golden State, helping the franchise win three championships in the span of three seasons. Now, he is a member of the organization’s front office, serving in basketball operations. The exact position is Director, Players Affairs and Engagement.

“I want to serve people,” Livingston said. “I want to help others. That’s what I get the most joy out of. So whether it’s at the boys club, you know, Salvation Army — whatever it is, it is going to be in service of other people.”

Prior to the hire, the seven most senior front office executives in the organization were white males.

“I get it,” Kirk Lacob said. “I fully understand when you look at our top three or four, it’s all White guys. But the key to any sort of diversity play is you have to give people an opportunity to grow. It’s not the superficial part. It’s about growing. We’re very aware of the way things look. But our goal is not to win a PR battle. Our goal is to create real change and set people up for success. So far, we’ve failed at that. But that’s the goal. We want to create future GMs.

“If you really want to poke a hole in us, it’s that we still haven’t hired a woman in basketball ops. And I take that right in the chest. It’s tough because we don’t have a lot of women applying for positions. And it’s not their fault, because they don’t see any women.”

A leader on the court, Livingston seems to have made a seamless transition into the front office of a very forward-thinking organization.

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