Livingston out for season with major knee injury

Updated: February 27, 2007, 9:35 PM ET
Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- Clippers point guard Shaun Livingston will be out 8-to-12 months after tearing three of the four ligaments in his left knee while driving to the basket against Charlotte.

Point Guard
Los Angeles Clippers

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"It's probably the most serious injury you can have to the knee," Clippers physician Dr. Tony Daly said Tuesday. "He might miss all of next year."

Livingston had an MRI exam Tuesday which revealed tears in the anterior cruciate ligament, posterior cruciate ligament, medial collateral ligament and lateral meniscus.

He also dislocated his patella, besides the previously diagnosed dislocation of his tibia-femoral. As a rookie in 2004, he dislocated his right knee.

Livingston was driving to the basket on a fast break Monday night, went up for a layup, and his left knee contorted as he collapsed in pain. A team doctor had to pop his knee back into place to alleviate the pain.

"He came down on the leg without any contact with anybody. It's a freak accident, that's for sure," said Daly, who has rarely seen anything similar in 24 years of practice.

He said the injury is more commonly associated with contact sports such as football and rugby.

Daly will solicit various medical opinions over the next two weeks, after which Livingston will have arthroscopic surgery, the doctor said. It wasn't yet decided if all three ligaments would be repaired at once.

Daly said Livingston did not tear an artery or damage any of the nerves in his knee, which can be serious complications.

"If everything goes well, he could be back playing as soon as eight months," Daly said. "My nature is to be conservative. I've seen people who've had this done by other people and it hasn't worked out."

Livingston, a three-year veteran who was drafted by the Clippers out of high school, has been hampered by injuries and has yet to play a full season in the NBA.

He sat out two games in January with a sprained right ankle. He missed 39 games during his rookie season because of a dislocated right knee, and another 12 that season because of torn cartilage in his right shoulder. Last season he sat out the first 21 games with a stress reaction in his lower back.

Livingston, who has been sharing point guard duties with Sam Cassell, was averaging 9.5 points and 5.2 assists.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press