Marquis Daniels ready to make most of opportunity with Bucks

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Marquis Daniels ready to make most of opportunity with Bucks

BOSTON - The good thing for Marquis Daniels is he hasn't had to do much color-scheme wise in fitting in with his new team, the Milwaukee Bucks.

But rest assured, Daniels' role with the Bucks is significantly different than it was with the Boston Celtics - on and off the court.

In Boston, he provided depth as a player the Celtics counted on for his versatility in their quest to win an NBA title.

With the Bucks, Daniels' playing time will be limited with him likely to spend more time mentoring younger players than motoring up and down the floor.

After all that he has been through, an opportunity to continue playing the game he loves is where his focus is right now.

"Take advantage of every opportunity," Daniels told CSNNE.com. "Dealing with the injuries from last couple years, I don't take nothing for granted, whether it's two minutes, three minutes, whatever it is. I just want to go out there and play hard. It could be gone at any time. I just want to take advantage of any situation."

Having had his share of potential career-ending injuries, Daniels can relate to what Jeff Green is dealing with now for the Celtics.

Green underwent season-ending heart surgery on the eve of training camp last year. He has since returned to the Celtics, but struggled mightily in Boston's season-opening loss at Miami.

Daniels understands that it takes time to heal, both physically and mentally.

"A lot of people expect you to do this and do that," Daniels said. "But there's still, you still have it in your head, 'what if this happens?' or 'what if that happens. Some way, you have to find a way to channel it out."

During his time in Boston, Daniels' career was marred by a slew of injuries that in many ways never allowed Celtics Nation to see just how valuable a player he could be.

Bucks General Manager John Hammond didn't need to be sold on Daniels, the player.

He was more concerned with learning all he could about Daniels, the person.

Needless to say, he was impressed.

"Every team, every roster needs people like that," Hammond told CSNNE.com. "You start with the man, and you go from there. I spoke with Danny (Ainge, Boston's president of basketball operations) and he had nothing but good things to say about Marquis as a person."

Milwaukee head coach Scott Skiles spoke with C's coach Doc Rivers prior to the Bucks signing him to a one-year deal for the veteran's minimum.

Like Hammond, Skiles was also impressed with what he was told about Daniels the person.

Good guy or not, Daniels still has to prove his worth on the floor.

Although Skiles likes the versatility that Daniels brings to the floor, that may not necessarily get him on the court with any kind of consistent minutes.

"He can do a lot of positive things," Skiles said. "What that means playing time-wise, I don't know yet. I have to make a decision on Tobias (Harris) first and see where he's at. And then Mike Dunleavy of course. Marquis can play backup 2 (shooting guard) as well. He's just a very versatile guy. We're glad to have him."

And he's glad to be in Milwaukee, even if his role in terms of playing time remains uncertain.

Haggerty: Bruins would be foolish to deal away Carlo right now

Haggerty: Bruins would be foolish to deal away Carlo right now

There’s been smoke for weeks signaling trade talks between the Boston Bruins and the Colorado Avalanche, and things are reportedly heating up with the Bruins potentially reaching a tipping point with their subpar play on the ice. According to Bleacher Report columnist Adrian Dater, things may be progressing between the two teams because the Bruins are beginning to entertain the idea of trading away 20-year-old top pairing rookie defenseman Brandon Carlo.

Bruins Director of Player Personnel John Ferguson Jrwas expected to be out in Colorado scouting the Avalanche/Blackhawks game on Tuesday night, and perhaps getting a long look at players like Gabriel Landeskog, Matt Duchene and Tyson Barrie among others.

The expectation is that 24-year-old Landeskog is in the middle of these trade discussions, and that he would be one of the players targeted by a Bruins team that could use more size on the wing, and more players that can put the puck in the net. Certainly Landeskog has done that in his brief NHL career after being a No. 2 overall pick, and has four 20-goal seasons on his resume prior to a disappointing, injury-plagued current season in Colorado.

The word around the league was that talks fizzled between the Bruins and Avs previously when Joe Sakic asked about the availability of the Colorado Springs native Carlo, and those discussions hit the same crunching roadblock that Winnipeg did in discussions with Boston about Jacob Trouba.

Perhaps that has changed in the last 24 hours after Cam Neely and Don Sweeney watched their Bruins completely no-show against the worst team in the Eastern Conference, the New York Islanders, on Monday afternoon. Now one would expect that Bruins management is getting desperate feeling that a third “Did Not Qualify” for the Stanley Cup playoffs could be in their future if they don’t make a bold, swift move to shake up their dazed hockey club.

But let’s not pull any punches here. The entire Bruins management group should be fired on the spot if they trade a 20-year-old, top pairing shutdown defenseman on an entry level contract like Carlo unless they are getting a bona fide superstar in return. Carlo, Charlie McAvoy and David Pastrnak should all be young, untouchable assets for a Bruins organization that is years away from legitimately holding a chance at a Stanley Cup.

Landeskog is not a bona fide superstar. He’s a good player that’s topped out at 26 goals and 65 points in the NHL, but he’s also the Captain on a horrendous, underachieving Avalanche team over the last three years.

If the price were right for Landeskog it would make all the sense in the world for the Bruins to deal him, but it’s a giant honking red flag that Colorado is looking to unload a player like him that’s signed for a reasonable $5.5 million price tag over the next four seasons. Teams don’t trade young players like that with term unless there’s more to the story, and that’s something the Bruins would do well to consider before giving up a player that could be a top-4 shutdown defenseman in Boston for the next 10 years.

Teams like the Bruins that are in reloading mode also shouldn’t be trading 20-year-old players for 24-year-old players that have already cashed in on their second contract. That’s exactly how the Bruins can get right back into salary cap trouble, and do it with a team that’s producing far less than the Peter Chiarelli groups that were at least still making the playoffs.  

Certainly the Bruins have other young D-men like Charlie McAvoy, Jakub Zboril and Jeremy Lauzon coming down the pipeline, but none of those defensemen are in the mold of a true shutdown D like the 6-foot-5 Carlo. With Zdeno Chara in the final few years of his career with the Black and Gold, the B’s are going to need Carlo to slide into that defensive stopper role given his size, strength, wing span and willingness to do the dirty work the D-zone.

That goes beyond the simple fact that rebuilding the back end with ALL of those young stud D-men is the best way to actually build the Bruins back up into a legitimate Eastern Conference power. 

It would be a giant mistake for the Bruins to ship away a player like Carlo with the hope Landeskog can put Boston over the hump for the playoffs this season, and perhaps ease some of the intense pressure currently weighing on Sweeney and Neely. That kind of desperate move smacks of doing it for all of the wrong reasons, and that’s one way to ensure that the Bruins will never escape the web of mediocrity that they’re currently caught in.