March 3, 2015
Charlotte Hornets, Houston Rockets, Minnesota Timberwolves, NBA, Troy Daniels.
VCU alum Troy Daniels is averaging 2.7 points and shooting .317 from 3-point range this season.
Troy Daniels is technically a Houston resident – he has a town home there – but he’s officially been living out of a suitcase the past couple of months.
It’s been a whirlwind second NBA season for the former VCU sharpshooter. Daniels, briefly a playoff hero for the Houston Rockets last season, has been traded twice since December. Despite the shuffling of zip codes, Daniels is still happy to be wearing in NBA uniform, regardless of where the team is located.
“It’s fun to even be considered by an NBA team, and I just appreciate the opportunities I’ve been given,” he says.
For now, and presumably for the near future, he’s a Charlotte Hornet, but he also thought he’d be a Houston Rocket for a while, until the team dealt him to the Minnesota Timberwolves on Dec. 19. Before he’d even had time to pick out a favorite grocery store, he and teammate Mo Williams were traded to Charlotte on Feb 10.
It’s actually Daniels’ second tour of duty with the Hornets. Daniels played for the organization’s summer league team and earned a training camp invite as an undrafted free agent in 2013.
The irony is that Charlotte, then known as the Bobcats, cut Daniels, which actually may have helped launch his NBA career. He was quickly signed by Houston, which stashed him with its Rio Grande D-League team. Daniels flourished in Rio Grande’s revolutionary, 3-point-heavy system, as the Roanoke, Virginia native set a D-League single-season record for threes.
January 16, 2015
B.A. Walker, Bradford Burgess, Eric Maynor, Jamal Shuler, Jamie Skeen, Jesse Pellot-Rosa, Joey Rodriguez, Juvonte Reddic, Kirill Pishchalnikov, Kostantin Nesterov, L.F. Likholitov, Larry Sanders, NBA, Nick George, Troy Daniels.
Troy Daniels is averaging 3.5 points in 11 games with the Minnesota Timberwolves this season.
Troy Daniels ’13 (Minnesota Timberwolves)
Daniels has played fewer than 40 NBA games, but he’s already had an eventful career. Although he signed a two-year contract extension with the Houston Rockets in the offseason, Daniels was traded in December to the Timberwolves. The move has resulted in slightly more playing time for the former VCU sharpshooter (9.4 mpg to 6.4 mpg). Overall, Daniels is averaging 3.0 points, while shooting 32 percent (23-of-73) from 3-point range in 28 games this season.
Daniels was understandably one of the NBA’s feel-good stories last season. After averaging 21.5 points per game while setting 3-point shooting records at the Rockets’ D-League affiliate, Daniels earned a late-season call-up. Despite playing in just five regular-season games (averaging 8.5 ppg), Daniels averaged 17 minutes per game off the bench in the Rockets’ playoff series with Portland. In Game Three, Daniels broke a 116-116 tie with a 3-pointer with 12 seconds remaining in overtime. Houston won 121-116.
Larry Sanders ’10 (Milwaukee Bucks)
Sanders, hoping to bounce back from a 2013-14 season marred by injuries and suspension, was averaging 7.3 points, 6.1 rebounds and 1.4 blocked shots in 27 games before taking a leave to deal with personal issues. Sanders said recently he is working through those issues and hopes to be in a position to play again at some point. It is unclear when he will return.
Sanders has averaged 6.5 points, 5.8 rebounds and 1.8 blocks shots per game in five seasons with the Bucks.
L.F. Likholitov ’02 (Krasny Oktyabr – Russia)
St. Petersburg, Russia native L.F. Likholitov has continues to plug away as a pro with Krasny Oktyabr, where he’s currently teaming with LeBron James’ high school teammate (and former European teammate of Jamal Shuler) Romeo Travis. The 34-year-old Likholitov has appeared in eight games this season and is averaging 2.3 points and 1.5 rebounds per game. Likholitov ranks second in VCU history with 207 blocked shots.
October 14, 2014
Houston Rockets, NBA, Phoenix Suns, Troy Daniels.
This year, Troy Daniels is in the Houston Rockets’ training camp not as an unknown free agent clinging to hope – as he was last year at this time – but as a guy who has already won his roster spot and is now looking to carve out a more prominent role. Daniels appears on the right track in the early going. Although coaches love to run out all kinds of lineup combinations in NBA preseason games, the former VCU sharpshooter has managed to impress. Monday night, he scored 12 points for the Rockets in a win over the Phoenix Suns – including a floater, which somebody should tell him is only worth two points. We all know Troy Daniels has no time for baskets worth less than three points. Have no fear, he made three 3-pointers as well and is 5-of-11 from long range in three preseason games. Thankfully, the Internet is here to provide us with highlights of Daniels’ effort tonight. Thanks Interwebs!
April 28, 2014
Houston Rockets, NBA, NBA Playoffs, Portland Trailblazers, Troy Daniels.
Here’s Troy Daniels, you know, the former Ram, undrafted free agent rookie, scoring 17 points in the second NBA Playoff game of his life. I’m not going to say much more because I’m running out of superlatives for Daniels, other than to add, rather obviously, that he’s perhaps the best story of the first round of the playoffs. Houston’s down 3-1 in the series to Portland, so hopefully Daniels has a few heroics left in the holster so we can KEEP WATCHING TROY DANIELS BURY THREES FOR DAYS.
April 10, 2014
Denver Nuggets, Houston Rockets, NBA, Troy Daniels.
Troy Daniels was recalled from the NBA D-League Wednesday. So the former VCU 3-point gunner hopped on a plane and met the Houston Rockets in Denver and started bombing threes from the airport terminal. Well, almost.
The Rockets trailed by 17 heading into the fourth quarter, so they unloaded their bench of D-League All-Stars, including Daniels. It took Daniels about .7 seconds to start firing away. In all, the former Ram hit 4-of-6 triples to help the Rockets rally to within six. Prior to Wednesday, Daniels had played a grand total of eight NBA minutes. After this 12-point, 11-minute performance, you’ve got to think Rockets’ Coach Kevin McHale (responsible for one of the greatest episodes of “Cheers” in history) will consider getting his rookie shooting guard a little more burn the last four games of the regular season.
And look, we have highlights! Thanks Internets!
March 8, 2014
Houston Rockets, NBA, Troy Daniels first NBA points, Troy Daniels.
Awesome moment for Troy Daniels. Here are his first two buckets as a Houston Rocket. Naturally, his first NBA bucket was a three. The first of many, we hope.
February 3, 2014
Andy Rautins, D-League, Houston Rockets, NBA, Rio Grande Valley Vipers, Troy Daniels.
Former Ram Troy Daniels set a D-League record for 3-pointers on Jan. 29. He has 159 treys this season.
EDITOR’S NOTE: On Feb. 3, Troy Daniels was selected for the D-League All-Star Game on Feb. 15.
Early in training camp, Nevada Smith laid out one of the more unconventional elements of his coaching philosophy: he wanted his team, the NBA D-League’s Rio Grande Valley Vipers, to shoot more than 40 three-pointers a game.
While it’s a strategy that was sure to rankle a few traditionalists, Troy Daniels felt like he’d hit the lottery.
“Oh yeah. I was like a kid in a candy store,” said Daniels, a 2013 VCU graduate and D-League rookie.
Daniels’ basketball career is nothing if not prolific. Last season, he hit a VCU-record 124 three-pointers, 32 more than the previous mark. In a game against East Tennessee State last year, Daniels bombed 11 triples – many from NBA range. In his four-year career, 85 percent of his field goal attempts came from beyond the 3-point arc.
In other words, he was born to play in this offense.
The results have been historic. In 29 games with the Vipers, an affiliate of the Houston Rockets, Daniels has been one of the D-League’s breakout stars, averaging 23.4 points and a league-high 5.5 three-pointers per game. On Jan. 29, Daniels hit his 153rd three-pointer to break the D-League mark of 152, set by Andy Rautins, and did so in 21 fewer games. He is now 159-of-392 from three in 29 games.
October 31, 2013
Benkku, Benkku Harris, Benny Dees, Bernard Harris, Buffalo Braves, Chuck Noe, Forssa Koripojat, Gerald Lee, Get In The Game, Jesse Dark, Los Angeles Clippers, NBA, New York Knicks, Supernard, Turku NMKy
Bernard Harris (center) with Gerald Lee Sr. (right) and Ervin Latimer (photo credit Gerald Lee Jr.).
Although the wild, expansive afro from college is long gone, Bernard Harris doesn’t appear far removed from the 6-foot-9 string bean from Roanoke who helped guide the VCU Basketball program through its formative years.
Now 62, Harris could pass for a man 10-12 years his junior. His lean frame is intact, but with some added muscle.
“I guess my conditioning is partly good genes, and the fact that I enjoy playing and working out,” Harris said recently, via email. “It’s not easy!”
He’s aged well, but not just physically. Harris’ career has also remained vibrant over the years. Nearly a decade removed from his days as a player and coach in Finland’s top pro league, where he became a star and earned national celebrity, Harris seems to have transitioned smoothly.
VCU fans may still know him as “Supernard”, but these days, Harris is more commonly referred to as Benkku, an oft-mononymous Finnish basketball institution who came ashore more than 30 years ago.
Benkku is how most of the kids of the Get In The Game program, Harris’ 10-year-old youth sports initiative sponsored by Finland’s Ministry of Education, know the former VCU star. That, and the and children’s book on basketball he wrote in the late 80s and the spin-off cable TV program that ran for two seasons in the 90s.
Get In The Game, for which Harris serves as president, aims to use athletics to promote fitness and healthy living, while steering kids clear of drugs and alcohol. Harris conducts tennis and basketball summer camps and also speaks at high schools about the dangers of substance abuse. According to the organization’s website, Get In The Game has made visits to more than 250 schools in the last 10 years. The program has produced a number of TV programs with Finnish sports stars to the same end, including “Benkku’s All-Star Bowling“. Get In The Game has also held a number of youth tennis camps in Finland with VCU Tennis Coach Paul Kostin.
For a guy whose basketball career looked at one point as if it would continue in perpetuity, he seems to have comfortably eased into this stage of his career, one which blends teaching, wellness and health activism.
October 18, 2013
Houston Rockets, NBA, Troy Daniels.
Troy Daniels is still shooting for the NBA. The former VCU 3-point gunner signed with the Houston Rockets today, the team announced.
It’ll be interesting to see if Troy sticks with Houston. With the Daniels signing, the Rockets are now carrying 18 players on their roster, and according to HoopRumors’ Luke Adams, 13 are inked to guaranteed deals. Several Houston writers and bloggers have already speculated this move was made with the D-League in mind, which wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing. Daniels would have the opportunity to get playing time and develop with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.
Weiner has more insight on his Twitter timeline, if you’re so inclined. Hopefully, Daniels will get some preseason burn with Houston. The Rockets’ next two preseason games – Oct. 21 vs. Dallas and Oct. 24 vs. San Antonio, will be televised by NBATV and TNT, respectively. In the meantime, here’s a gif of Daniels’ NBA meal ticket.
October 2, 2013
Ben Gordon, Charlotte Bobcats, Gerald Henderson, Mark Price, NBA, Steve Clifford, Troy Daniels.
Troy Daniels averaged 12.3 points per game and shot .403 (124-of-308) from 3-point range for VCU last season. He’s in training camp this fall with the Charlotte Bobcats.
Unless you’ve been maintaining radio silence since the end of last season, you know that Troy Daniels is in training camp with the Charlotte Bobcats this week. Like most undrafted free agents, Daniels will face an uphill battle in order to actually grab a roster spot. VCU fans justifiably want to know what kind of shot Daniels has of making the team. Let’s have a look.
Factor No. 1: Roster space.
NBA rosters consist of 13 active players, plus two inactive spots. The Bobcats currently have five guards – Kemba Walker, Gerald Henderson, Ramon Sessions, Jannero Pargo and Ben Gordon – signed to guaranteed contracts.
While Charlotte could certainly choose to carry three shooting guards, don’t expect them to drop a point guard to free up the space, according to Bobcats’ beat writer Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer.