The Milwaukee Bucks have signed former Boston Celtics guard-forward Marquis Daniels for their final roster spot. Daniels signed a one-year, $1.2 million deal that is the veteran’s minimum. Daniels will make a valuable contribution to the team as the Bucks clearly made the right call signing the nine-year veteran.
Daniels started his career with the Dallas Mavericks, who signed him to a one-year, minimum contract in 2003 after going undrafted out of Auburn. Daniels had a remarkable rookie season in which he averaged 8.5 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 2.1 assists while shooting 49.4 percent from the field in 18.6 minutes of playing time. He was named to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team for his outstanding play.
Daniels became a starter and signed a six-year, $38 million contract with the Mavericks during the 2004 offseason. He played three years with Dallas before being traded to the Indiana Pacers for Austin Croshere at the end of the 2006 season.
He may have only played three years in Indiana, but the 2008-09 season was his best statistical season of his career to date. In 54 games, he averaged 13.6 points, 4.6 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.1 steals, and converted 45.1 percent from the field. Boston signed him in free agency in 2009 in which he played in a very limited role.
The 31-year-old will add size and athleticism to the shooting guard position behind starter Monta Ellis. Milwaukee has been criticized for lacking size at guard, as the 6-foot-6 should definitely take care of that. Not to mention, if injuries take effect – as they have the last few years for the Bucks – Daniels is more than capable of playing small forward.
This means rookie Doron Lamb – who I believe was the best second round pick out of this year’s NBA Draft – will now see limited minutes. However, that is not necessarily a bad thing, as he will get a great opportunity to watch the veterans go to work and absorb all they have to teach him.
It will be interesting to see how Daniels fits in with the other players on the court and how he will make the Bucks a better team. There is no question the guy can play and appears to be exactly what head coach Scott Skiles looks for in a player.
“The signing of Marquis gives us another veteran presence on our team,” said Bucks GM John Hammond. “Marquis has nine years of NBA experience and has been part of winning organizations. He can defend multiple positions and is a reliable offensive player.”
With five guards and 10 forwards, the Bucks appear to be a well-balanced team ready to make a serious run at an NBA Championship this upcoming season. I personally have high expectations for the team, as I know Milwaukee’s players do as well.
In 489 career games, Daniels has averaged 8.2 points, 2.9 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 0.3 blocks, 0.9 steals per game and has converted 45.8 percent from the field and 72.0 percent from the free throw line in 21.7 minutes of game time.
Michael is a MLB and NBA Featured Writer for Rant Sports, but covers topics for various teams in baseball, basketball, and football. Make sure to follow Michael on Twitter @MichaelTerrill and on Facebook.