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Livingston skips Duke, hires agent

Mr. Livingston, we presume? Not at Duke next year.

Shaun Livingston has hired sports management agency CSMG, which includes Chicago-based attorney and agent Henry Thomas, to represent him in the upcoming draft, personal trainer Tim Grover and grandfather Frank Livingston both said. By hiring the firm, Livingston formally forfeits his college eligibility and becomes the first Blue Devil commitment ever to declare for the draft out of high school.

"It was a pretty tough decision," Livingston told "I told Coach [Mike Krzyzewski] that I never committed to Duke thinking I wouldn't suit up for them."

Livingston made his decision last week after strong workouts with a host of teams, including the Orlando Magic (first pick), the Los Angeles Clippers (second pick), the expansion Charlotte Bobcats (fourth pick) and the Philadelphia 76ers (ninth pick).

"I guess he thought he was doing well [in the workouts]," Livingston's grandfather Frank said. "He always wanted to play in the NBA."

Among the teams interested in selecting Livingston in the June 24 draft are the aforementioned Clippers and Bobcats, both of whom attended the lanky point guard's individual workouts last week.

"I would probably say the Charlotte Bobcats [were most impressed]," said Grover, who is also working with erstwhile Duke star Luol Deng. "I could just tell by the way the workout went."

Projected as a top-10 pick in the upcoming draft, Livingston, the nation's top prep point guard and Duke's highest-rated signee for the class of 2004, has captivated college coaches--and NBA scouts--with uncanny passing and ballhandling ability for a player standing 6-foot-7.

"He is a phenomenal handler of the basketball," Duke associate head coach Johnny Dawkins said. "He is a mature player on the court. He has great vision on the court and has the ability to make the guys around him better."


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