Jun 6, 2011 4:51 PM by Alan Cutler
Watching Liggins workout for the Indiana Pacers makes you smile. He's taking a charge. He's being very aggressive, which surprises no one who knows Liggins.
After UK lost to UConn, no one in their right mind thought Liggins would be drafted in June by the NBA. Time will tell, but Liggins is convinced he has a shot at getting picked in the first round.
Making it in the NBA is more than just the big bucks. It rekindles a memory for him that never goes away, and at times like this becomes really strong.
Basketball players are put on a pedestal in the Commonwealth, but in reality, they are just people. Just about every True Blue fan knows that Liggins' brother, Maurice Davis was murdered. His older brother was an athlete. When Liggins is doing his NBA tryouts, he's thinking about him.
"A lot," says Liggins.
"He would have been in the NBA probably already. Me putting on that NBA warm ups and socks and all of that, it inspires me to keep working harder."
It's more than Liggins thinking of his brother. It's about following the road he believes his brother would have taken.
"It's a thing I dreamed about all my life since my brother passed away. I always wanted to live his dream when he passed away. Continue his legacy throughout the family. I want to be the man of the family. Once that day hits and I am in the league that will be a big inspiration to me. "
Put yourself in Liggins' shoes. This trip around the NBA has been fun. He's a kid from Chicago who worked out in Chicago in front of NBA scouts and general managers and a certain owner. Liggins' hero, Michael Jordan.
"It was great having Michael Jordan watching me play. I wasn't nervous or nothing like that. I still competed like he wasn't over there. He just inspired me to go even harder."
Which is the million dollar question. It's tough to believe any athletic player who plays that hard with Liggins talent won't make it in the NBA.