Shaun Livingston cashed in, leaving the Nets looking for another point guard on the opening day of free agency.
Livingston agreed to terms with the Warriors Tuesday night, a source confirmed, verbally committing to a three-year deal worth a reported $16 million. It wasn't unexpected for the Nets, who knew they could lose Livingston because he was going to command more than the maximum three-year, $10-million deal they could offer.
Hours before Golden State locked up Livingston, Nets general manager Billy King almost seemed resigned to the fact he was headed for a big payday.
"It's just free agency, it is what it is,'' King said. "And I respect the fact that guys have the ability as free agents to try to make as much money as possible.
"I don't begrudge anybody. If Shaun gets a great deal, I'll be happy for him. I think he's earned it and he's come a long way. And if he gets a great deal, I told him, I said I'll be happy and hug you every time I see you and I'll appreciate the job you did this year.''
Paul Pierce reportedly is drawing serious attention on the market, and because the Nets can't spend much on unrestricted free agents, King suggested they're going to have to be patient and wait things out a bit. He said he reached out to representatives of Livingston, Pierce and Alan Anderson -- everyone except Andray Blatche, whom he's not about to bring back.
King said he remained confident he can re-sign Pierce. He had lunch with him in the middle of last month, picking Pierce's brain about free agency, family, the season overall and "the big picture.''
Pierce is still a part of the Nets' plans, although the price may have to be right for both sides to keep this marriage afloat.
"Paul, we do have his Bird Rights, but we're not going to go crazy,'' King said. "But we understand the value that he has for us and the impact, and we'd like him back.''