January 5, 2011
Antonio Daniels - Daniels's incredibly surprising D-League comeback trail after missing last season due to knee surgery was off to a fine start; however, the use of the past tense is deliberate. AD averaged 17.0 points, 8.2 assists and only 2.2 turnovers in the Texas Legends' first 9 games, shooting 49% from the field and 36% from three, while attempting 91 free throws to only 70 field goals. With 153 points on those 70 shots, Daniels led (leads) the league in true shooting percentage with a .695 mark (unheard of for a modern-era point guard), as well as ranking second in the league with 3.7:1 assist/turnover ratio. (Strangely, the league leader in assist/turnover ratio is 6'11 Bakersfield jumpshooting centre Luke Zeller, with a 4.3:1 mark. Luke also has 75 three point attempts to only 4 free throw attempts. He is a centre in height only.) Daniels was well on his way to earning a return to the NBA as a heady veteran point guard, with Portland reported to be interested, but he injured his hand in the 9th game and has not played since. He makes this list, however, for the fact that he will be back soon, where once again he will become a front line call-up candidate.
December 15, 2010
Some NBA veterans, such as Antonio Daniels and Sean Williams, have gone to the D-League to re-establish their careers. This is a commonplace move and a sensible one; there's nowhere better to be seen by the NBA than in the D-League, right on its doorstep, and the deliberately formed call-up system allows for these players to be signed by the NBA at a moment's notice, with no hassle or letter-of-clearance delays. The D-League is a great platform for those on the cusp of the big time, and a decent place to rebuild a wavering career for those who were in the big dance but who fell out for some reason. The upper echelons of European basketball do of course pay more, yet the flexibility to return to the NBA at a moment's notice is often sacrificed by being there, and only rarely does Europe pay more than a minimum salary NBA contract. You'll have to be very good or very lucky to get more than that.
November 15, 2010
29th: - Texas Legends - Antonio Daniels, Bowling Green
Daniels's inclusion in this draft is strange on two counts. It's strange that he'd want this; the man hasn't played anywhere other than the NBA since he was drafted out of Bowling Green back in 1997, and the 35 year old didn't play at all last season. It's also strange that the D-League would let him - after all, the D stands for "Developmental", and all Daniels has left to develop is a pension plan. Nevertheless, he's here, and while it's been two and a half years since he was an NBA calibre talent, there might still be a spark in the fire. He now needs to throw a log on it.
July 30, 2010
Antonio Daniels - Daniels didn't play last season, taking a buyout from the Timberwolves in preseason in anticipation of a new contract elsewhere that never came. He turns 36 last this season and hasn't been good for three years; nonetheless, he was a good player back in the day, and was sufficiently adequate even as he fell out of the league. A return must therefore not be ruled out.
January 25, 2010
- Antonio Daniels
Neither is Antonio Daniels. Daniels was traded by the Hornets to the Timberwolves this offseason in exchange for Darius Songaila and Bobby Brown, purely because his contract was one year shorter than Songaila's. Consider for a minute that the cost of trading Randy Foye and Mike Miller for Ricky Rubio was taking on Songaila's salary, then consider how easy it was to get rid of it, and essentially it cost Randy Foye and Bobby Brown to get Ricky Rubio. Hmmm. Seems....I dunno. One-sided.
The Timberwolves then bought out Daniels for $736,420 less than what his contract initially called for; not coincidentally, that's the same amount Nathan Jawai is getting this season. Daniels clearly thought there was a chance he'd get a minimum salary deal elsewhere, but like the rest of the veteran point guards on the market (Brevin Knight, Steve Francis, etc), he's had to stand by and watch while teams call up the Sundiata Gaines and Cedric Jackson types of this world. Daniels remains unsigned.