Dallas Mavericks

Bull Debut

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Two games into my Chicago career, and I’m playing hot-and-cold. First, the hot, against the Mavs in Dallas.

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I’m Free!

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I’m a free agent now. I can make my own decision where I want to play. Let’s see who’s offering me a contract!

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Playoffs: Yes or No?

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The season’s over now, and I’ve got a chronicle of the trials that lead to game 82. Also, did we make the playoffs? Let’s find out.

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Wrapping up the Regular Season Already

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It’s official: they’re hyping me up way too much for what I’ve done in the league. By ‘they’ I mean everyone – my team, the media and my teammates. My ‘mates were apparently talking me up after a recent game – a game I finished with 5 points, 4 rebounds and 2 blocks on 30% shooting. Yay.

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Enter: The Hawk

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It’s my first game in Atlanta! I wanted to get off to a great start and make a good first impression, and I think I did – but my team also made an impression on me.

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Daniel’s Bum Ankle

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Every time I open my mouth I stick my stupid foot in it. I compared myself to Kobe two games ago and then played terrible. Last game I bemoaned my teammates ineffectiveness and, well… we’ll get to that. In any case, we were in Dallas tonight.

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The Wizards, the Mavericks, and My Myopia

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We played the Wizards of Capital Hill the other day, and it was a really frustrating affair. We entered the 4th quarter up by seven, but were outscored in the final period by 14. We had absolutely no defense during the fourth quarter. I didn’t score well overall, with just three points to go with two rebounds and three assists, but I didn’t turn the ball over, either.

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The Mavericks would get the brunt of our frustrations. We took an early 17-8 lead after a 15-0 run in the first quarter and never looked back. I scored 10 points, including two first half three pointers. Yes! I’d been missing so bad recently that I was ready to stop shooting them. You know the type of shot I mean, the ones that look like they have a chance to kill a small child in the stands when the player shoots it, they’re so off course? That kind. In fact, look at my expression here in this next picture. I think it says it all.

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“Ok, I know the basket’s out there somewhere, I just can’t see it. Where did I put my glasses?”

I also contributed 2 rebounds and six assists against the Mavs, but turned he ball over twice. I’m currently averaging 6.6 points, 1.5 rebounds, and 2.0 assists per game this season. In the last six matchups, I’m averaging 9.8 points, 2.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists. I’m getting better as the year goes along.

In other news I’m looking at the polls on the side of the page, and I see that there’s no consensus yet on what player I should make, other than ‘big.’ As for the how I’m doing, we have one for ‘OK,’ one for “pretty bad,’ and one for ‘why isn’t he in the NBADL?’. I think that pretty much sums up my feelings so far, too. I’ll have an ok game, a pretty bad game, and then I’ll have a whale of a stinker. I tend to think of myself as the Andy Marte of the Miami Heat. For those of you who don’t follow the Cleveland Indians, he’s their struggling third baseman that they’ve tried to play for the last four years. He’s hitting under .225 for his career and can be a defensive nightmare at times (three errors in the first inning of one game this year), and yet they keep on playing him, even trading or demoting other, sometimes better players to find him time, hoping he’ll become something because he’ll occasionally show signs of promise. Personally, I’m convinced he’s some high ranking front-office big-wig’s personal pet project. Every time he starts I get frustrated at him being forced upon the fan base despite his lack of performance.  This comes back to me of course, with the Heat starting me rather then Carlos Arroyo while Wade was hurt and demoting Mario Calmers to the NBADL to find me playing time. I can only imagine how the fans feel about me by now.

- Rick Daniel

Trio of Triumphs

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A couple more games down, and a new milestone or two accomplished. Game one was a win over the Philadelphia 76ers. I had 4 points, 1 board and 4 assists this game, including the pass you see above to LBJ  for a slam. Not a great game, but not terrible either.

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The next game against the Mavs in Dallas was a poor effort by me. We won but I only scored 2 points with a rebound and an assist on 1-5 shooting. I just didn’t play well at all, and for that matter spent most of the game as a 5th wheel on the court, totally uninvolved in the action.

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The next game was against the Wizards at home, and I decide early on that I was going to be more aggressive. I ended up with 10 points, 4 rebounds, an assist and a block. Two of my points came on an alley-oop play.

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Mike Miller tossed me the ball at the rim and I laid that sucker right in. Yay! It was totally unplanned and completely unexpected, but it was cool. My first alley-oop score!

Another milestone was hit in the 4th quarter of the Wizards game. For whatever reason, our coach decided that since the game was locked up that I could be moved to small forward with 2:37 to go in the 4th. I didn’t have any particular issues with it and no one scored on me during this time, but it was funny. I know I’m kind of big for a point guard (6’2, 215 lbs) but I’m not that big. Maybe he’s taking ‘small’ forward a little too literally.

- Rick Daniel

Getting Better all the Time

My latest games saw me first taking on the Wizards at home. Gilbert Arenas wasn’t too much too handle, but getting put on Randy Foye in the 4th quarter exhibited a weakness I’d not thought about yet – but I’ll get to that in a minute. The first highlight was at the end of the 4th. We were down three and I had the only open shot at the tying basket.

wizshot1I pulled up over Foye, and the ball took forever to get to the rim.

wizshot2Time seemed to stand still as the ball continued it’s arc. Finally hitting the rim, it spun around the cylinder four whole times before finally falling through the twine. YES!! Tie game and we’re headed to overtime!

whosclutchWho’s clutch? Yeah, that’s right, I’m clutch.

But I’m also exhausted.

I finally caught on here that my stamina was a real problem. I had literally nothing left for the OT session and we got blown out (Foye finished with 30 points). Dammit. I made two decisions after this game. Number one was to work hard on my stamina, and number two was to slow the game down and not run full-tilt so much. We got to put both of those plans in to practice against the Mavs. That game became my own personal dunk exhibition.

mavdunk1Dunk #1: Over Jason Terry.

mavdunk2 Dunk #2: Over Jason Kidd and some rook names Dawson.

mavdunk3Dunk #3: On the fast break. Which one wins? Yes, I know I don’t dunk  very flashy, but this was the first time I had multiple dunks in a game. Cut me some slack.

swoopmav I had a very good game (for me, obviously). I had ten points in the first half, and followed that up with four more points and three assists in the second half. I also shot over 50%. I also only had one turnover.

So, slow the game down some and work on my stamina and we can win a couple of these games. I’ll try and keep those keys in mind.

- Rick Daniel

Back at Last

It’s been quite some time since I’ve checked in. My big brother, Bud Daniel, is tearing up the Big Leagues in MLB 2K10, so I thought I’d let you know what I’m up to. Recently, in an act of mercy, the games have been cut back to 5 minute quarters. In my first game under this new time rule, we lost to the Mavericks, despite a decent performance by me. I actually cost us the game when I caught a rebound under the hoop with 15 seconds left and a two point deficit. I tried to go back up with it and got stuffed – game over.

LayupGriz The next game was crazy. Not only did the team trust me in to the starting lineup for the first time, someone sped the pace of the game up to double what it was (translation: I tweaked the video settings to get 30 FPS instead of 15), so I spent part of our matchup with the Grizzlies trying to get acclimated. I really should have gone to a shoot around first! I ended up with 9 points, but that was on 4-15 shooting. Ouch. After some time in the gym, I was ready to try again.

RunningCatsNext game featured us hosting the Bobcats. This time, I was ready and prepared to score. End line: 16 points, 3 assists, two steals and the Player of the Game award in a win. Yes! i shot a sweet 8-10 this time, which felt good. We beat the ‘Cats 61-44 and it really wasn’t that close. Now, to carry that momentum into the next game.

- Rick Daniel

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