Summer League Players in Review: Erik Daniels

Monday, July 20, 2009

With the NBA's Las Vegas Summer League officially wrapping up yesterday, I thought I'd take this week to look back at some of the Erie BayHawks-relevant stories. Today, tomorrow, and Wednesday, I'll recap the performances of the three former BayHawks players who participated in the Vegas league. And then, on Thursday and Friday, I'll take a closer look at Erie's affiliates, breaking down the Cavaliers and Raptors Summer League team performances.

First up is the man who led the BayHawks to the playoffs this past season as a 1st-team all-D-League selection, Erik Daniels.

The 6'8" forward from Kentucky saw no playing time through the first three Summer League games, but the Grizzlies organization finally gave the veteran some burn in games four and five. Daniels played just under 13 minutes in each game.

Against Phoenix, in a game the Grizzlies won going away 97-60, Daniels saw his first Summer League action and made the most of his short time on the court. He scored 4 points on 2-3 shooting, grabbed 3 rebounds, dished out 2 assists and blocked a shot.

In the Grizzlies Summer League finale, which they won 76-75 versus the Spurs, Daniels again found little ways to contribute in limited minutes. His only two field goal attenpts were 3-pointers, but he hit one, and he added 2 rebounds and a steal to his statline. In his two games played, he did not commit a turnover.

Daniels' Summer League experience was surely not what he was hoping for. It's hard for any player to show what they can do in just 25 minutes of playing time, but Daniels did what he could with the opportunity he was given. Since he likely didn't get to showcase his abilities enough to earn a spot on an NBA roster this coming fall, Daniels will likely head overseas next season, as Duane Rankin of the Erie Times-News reports.

For fans of the Erie BayHawks, it's no surprise that Daniels won't be back in Erie next year. The money just isn't there, and at this stage of his career, Daniels is older than most of the players in the D-League. Still, the fans in Erie will remember Daniels as one of the key components of the success of the franchise's inaugural season.


P-Flaw said...
July 22, 2009 at 11:33 AM  

Nice recap, Summer League is bittersweet for many. It's cool to be in that setting, but many just do not get the necessary run. There isn't much of a gap between the last guys on NBA rosters and the best D-League players. I believe Daniels has NBA talent, but it all about getting that opportunity. He will be do well in Europe and make good coin.

Matt Hubert said...
July 22, 2009 at 12:13 PM  

Thanks, and I agree. I don't think many people realize that the gap is so small between players playing in Europe/D-League and the guys on the end of NBA benches, and that sometimes it really is just about finding a team willing to give someone like Daniels that NBA opportunity that he may never get at this stage of his career.

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About this blog/blogger

Blog Talk BayHawk is an unofficial Erie BayHawks blog covering the NBA D-League. It features opinions and information about the NBADL and the Erie BayHawks. Blog Talk BayHawk is written from a basketball fan’s perspective to fill In the gaps left by professional journalists’ coverage of BayHawks basketball and the Erie professional basketball scene.

Matt Hubert is a 25-year-old writer and basketball fanatic born and raised in Erie, Pa. He graduated from Mercyhurst College in 2007 with a bachelor's degree in English and a dual concentration in writing and creative writing. Matt's not wavering from his stance as a lifelong Los Angeles Lakers fan, but he will cover the BayHawks' NBA affiliates in Cleveland and Toronto when it makes sense to do so throughout the year.

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