NCAA |  In Kentucky, Chris Livingston chooses to win before shining

NCAA | In Kentucky, Chris Livingston chooses to win before shining



A high school star for several years, then a popular rookie on the university circuit, Chris Livingston will begin his NCAA career in the ranks of Kentucky, under the orders of John Calipari.

Ranked 16th among the best high school students of the class of 2022, the Ohio native winger was a star in high school and he will certainly be one of the most prominent “freshmen” of the 2022/23 season in the university championship.

In any case, it will be in a different role than the one to which he has been accustomed until then, that is to say that of the “go-to-guy”. In the XXL workforce of the Wildcats, who have – on paper – perhaps the best team in the country, the new winger of “Coach Cal” will no longer be the best player on the field every night, and must therefore operate a transition to a “glue guy” role.

Know how to adapt as soon as possible

A transition already started last season, since Chris Livingston left his modest high school in Ohio in the summer of 2021, where he was the center of the game on all fronts, to join the famous Oak Hill Academy in Virginia, where he rubbed shoulders with other NBA prospects.

And this change in status on the field was naturally also felt in the numbers: from a huge “junior” season with 31.1 points, 15.8 rebounds, 6.1 assists, 4.7 blocks and 4 steals in Ohio, he went to 18.2 points, 9.1 rebounds and 3.9 assists in Virginia for his “senior” season. »

A change of scenery that allowed him to better understand his priorities: victory comes before personal production.

It helped me lighten my responsibilities in attack. In my previous high school, I had to do a lot on offense to give us a chance to win. he had declared a few months ago. ” Here I can focus on other things. Playing with great talent is something you have to get used to as soon as possible, to prepare for the next level. »

Unity is always strength

Now on the Lexington campus, one month from the start of his “freshman” season, he continues to apply this logic to training.

There are no egos on this team. I really enjoy playing with these guys. Playing with teammates who pull me up, while I’m fully involved in team play, means more to me than taking 30 shots every night with no assurance of winning. he recently said. ” Everyone here only has the goal of winning. »

Chris Livingston therefore retains from his time at Oak Hill and his first months in Kentucky that the importance of the collective surpasses the other issues, but that each player individually will be sublimated if the collective shines.

Especially since the recent example of his teammate Oscar Tshiebwe, elected Player Of The Year the season passed unanimously in a well-oiled collective, only reinforces this feeling.

Oscar is one of the most selfless players I’ve ever met. He’s the reigning Player Of The Year, he’s got all those individual accolades, but he still plays like he has everything to prove. he added, admiringly. ” He gives his all, he is happy when his teammates score, but when you look at the stats he is still in a double-double. And he is just one example among many in our team. I’m really excited to spend the season with these guys. »

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