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|Daniel Gibson spent two years at the University of Texas and was named Honorable Mention All-America by The Associated Press following his sophomore season, before being selected in the second round (42nd pick overall) of the 2006 NBA Draft by the Cavaliers. Gibson averaged 4.6 points, 1.5 rebounds and 1.2 assists per game in his rookie campaign. In the playoffs he has come up big by scoring eight points apiece in the close-out games of the first round vs. Washington and the second round vs. New Jersey.
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I just play and let the game come to me. I really donít try to do a lot of different things, I just try to let the game come to me, take my time and whatever happens kind of happens.
Actually I thought in that situation that it was a kick ball before it, so I thought that the shot clock was a little lower than it actually was, so when I caught the ball I was already ready to shoot it so I just stepped right into it and shot it.
Sometimes making my first shot carries over and helps me, but most of the time itís important to just get a shot up period, whether it goes in or not, it kind of gets you loose a little bit, gets you going and then the next one is more of the real thing.
Iíve been hanging out with my family the whole time. Iíve been spending time with my little nephew and my momís out here so we went to the mall and Sea World. Weíve just been hanging out and relaxing. Iíve been recognized a little bit. Normally itís just a wave, Iíve signed a couple autographs too. Thatís about it.
Iíve just heard about them, I havenít seen them yet. Thatís cool though. Itís an honor that theyíre doing that for me.
We just got to come out with more aggression and more intensity and use the things that we learned in Game 1 to fix our mistakes.
It feels good. Just to have the opportunity for the people at home to come watch me play, like my mom, my sisters, my dad. For them to have the opportunity to come and watch me play means the world to me.
This right here, itís all new for me. But, Iím really enjoying it. I mean, itís The NBA Finals. Itís the biggest stage of the NBA. Just for us to have this opportunity to be able to play for a championship is big.
Iím pretty sure the Spurs wonít give me some of the same looks I had vs. the Pistons, but at the same time I feel like with LeBron James on my team, Iím definitely going to get some looks because teams have to pay a lot of attention to him and if they donít then heíll really hurt you. So I think that, with him, heís always going to find the open man and Iím going to just continue to move and, when he finds me, just try to keep knocking them down for him.
Iím just going to just continue to play and continue to use whatever the other teams give me to really use to my advantage. I think with Detroit, after watching a couple of the tapes, they really closed out hard and they didnít want me to get the three off, so I would use that, use a shot fake, and get into the lane. After a couple of games playing against San Antonio, Iíll see what theyíre doing. If theyíre running me off the line, or theyíre stopping me from getting to the paint, I might have to take a couple floaters or a couple of shots in the lane or things like that, Iím just going to play off what they do.
Iím just going to smile out here with the media a little bit and try to get myself prepared mentally to try to win another game.
So, going into the fourth I was going out there and looking for my shot and hunting for my shot and at the beginning of the quarter Damon Jones cut across the lane and he hit me on a shot and when it left my hands it felt good. From that point on I was like, ďYou know, if I get a good look Iím just going to let it fly because Iím really feeling good about it right now.Ē
A couple of them ended up going in for me and it ended up being a big night for me.
Sam is another guy who is always around when Iím working out in Houston. I love the comparison. He is a big-time, big-shot player and I just really try to relish those moments and those opportunities you have to make those big shots and make the most of them.
The night of Game 6 we felt like if we were going to celebrate we needed to celebrate that day and get it all out of our system and look forward to playing against San Antonio coming up, because we know what a great team they are and the things weíre gonna have to do to beat them. Weíre going to really have to lock in and get back focused.
So when it was time to celebrate, I really enjoyed it. After the game I really got to see how many people were behind me and how much support I really had back at home.
It went well. We really didnít do a whole whole lot. We kind of watched a lot of film on the Spurs to prepare ourselves mentally and went through a lot of shooting to get back into the flow of things and then tomorrow will probably be a lot more contact and going over what they like to do. So, weíre really getting focused and locking down now on the task ahead.
Tony is a great player and throughout the season Iíve worked hours and hours and hours on his teardrop, you know, the shot he likes to shoot. So there have been times that Iíve actually watched a lot of film on him trying to figure out how he gets that shot off so easily and so often. I think thatís going to help me a lot when Iím out there on the floor against him. Heís a great player. I think he really likes to get into the paint so Iím going to do the best that I can at staying in front of him and try to keep him out of there.
A lot of people assume that when youíre playing in the NBA that youíre playing for the money and youíre trying to make a lot of big money and stuff like that, but personally, my objective was to be on a team where I would have the opportunity to play and be on a team that I could really help and enjoy the game while doing it.
I felt like Cleveland would be a fit for me, and I worked out for the Rockets too. I just felt like the opportunity to play with LeBron, with so much attention that he draws, I felt like I would be able to get a lot of good looks and have the opportunity to drive the ball. I just knew Iíd be able to make the most out of my game by playing with a guy like that.
It was almost just business as usual. He didnít really show too many different signs, he didnít really do too much different. I mean, you could tell he was focusing and he wanted to win, but heís always like that. It just seemed like he was just in one of those grooves and in the zone, he just, I donít even know Ö
I just kept on trying to stay aggressive. I know on the road itís going to be a little different, the environment will be a little different, but I still wanted to be aggressive and get to the rim. I got a couple of those same fouls that I got in the last game by just attacking. You know, thatís what Iím going to try to do for the rest of the series.
Coming into the league, Chauncey Billups was, and he still is, hands down my favorite player. Thatís somebody that I try to take a lot of stuff from his game and then put it into mine. I remember when I was in college and my sister, I believe, was at a party he was at and I was really trying to talk to him. I just wanted to talk to him and introduce myself to him. She got the phone to him, I donít know how, and he got on the phone and he actually knew who I was. He was like, ďLittle man, you got game,Ē or whatever, and that was the end of it. That alone made me like him even more. I just made me think, like, ďMan, heís a cool dude.Ē
From then on, I always watched his games. When I was younger, the story Iíve been telling people, is that when I used to be in the backyard, you know how you play one-on-one against yourself? Youíre really playing by yourself but a lot of times I would be him doing the whole counting the shot clock down like, ď10 Ö 9 Ö 8 ÖĒ and then Iíd shoot the three and try to mimic some of the stuff he always do out there on the court.
I think like now when Iím playing him, a lot of the moves he do is a lot of the moves that I would simulate. So I think that it helped me on defense because Iíve seen it all before.
It wasnít like I was getting beat up by the neighborhood kids, it was more so like I was with my brother and my dad. We used to go in the backyard and play basketball and my dad is like 6-6 and my brother is like 6-3, 290 or something like that. So, both of them are big dudes. I used to go in the backyard and try to beat them, I played basketball against them. And every single time I would come into the house crying. It would be because I wanted to win and I could never beat them. I used to say that they used to foul me and all they wanted to do was post up and all this and that. So I donít really know where the ďBoobieĒ name came from or whether itís from those backyard games or not, but my momma always called me that and it just kind of stuck.
Honestly, I believe without me meeting John and spending all of last summer with him, I probably wouldnít even be doing some of the things that Iím doing right now. He really helped me, as far as just my confidence and the way I go about playing the game. I think that by me working so hard this summer, it got me to the point where I thought that, ďCanít nothing stop me.Ē Iím just going to out there and just be confident in what I do. Iíve worked so hard to get to this point to where, if it donít work out, I can say I gave it my all.
John has always, since I was in high school, been trying to get me to come work out with him. He telling me I need to be there with him. But I used to always brush him off. Then when I got to college, I could never go because in the summertime, we would always have summertime workouts. But, after I declared for the draft, I was like, ďYou know, Iím going to give it a shot.Ē
And then when I went, we worked out like crazy. We worked out three times a day. Iíd get up and shoot 500 shots at like eight oíclock and sometimes even six oíclock in the morning. Then after we finished working on ball-handling drills, floaters and then play a little bit, I was getting up 1,000 3-pointers at night. I was so sore to the point where I could barely walk and I think it just prepared me mentally for what I was about to go through. I mean, now, a lot of times itís even easier out there sometimes then in the summer with him.
Heís still my mentor. He still calls me all the time. I went through a stretch where I wasnít shooting the ball well or I wasnít shooting the ball enough and he called me and was like, ďMan, you better shoot the ball. Thatís your weapon, canít nobody ever take that away from you.Ē So, from that point on I started to be more aggressive in shooting the ball. And then, you know, he told me that teams were going to try to get to me as far as when Iím shooting, so now itís going to open up the drive for me and itís been working like that.
We need to stay focused. I know that was a big win for us, but we canít let that win let us relax at all because, I mean, Detroit is battle tested. They done been through the wars and they pretty much know what it takes to win the championship. So, we know they going to come out and give everything they got and in order for us to beat them, regardless if weíre at home or on the road, itís going to have to be one of our best efforts. So, I think we just got to say in tune mentally, keep executing and keep doing the same things that we did to get us to this point and I think that weíre going to be alright.
I knew coming into the game that Larry was hurting, but I really didnít know whether or not he was going to try to give it a go or what he was going to do. But, I had been informed that I could be starting.
Coming into the game, I knew that those guys were going to try to close out and contest me at the three-point line, so I just felt like I could use that, with them closing out so hard not thinking that Iíd want to penetrate. I think thatís a big part of my game too, so when they came on the close out, I just drove and tried to get into the paint and pick up a couple fouls on their big guys.
It was cool. You know me, Iím just out there having fun and then at a time like that, thatís why you play the game for when you get a feeling like that where youíre just thinking like every shot you take and every move you make is going to go in or itís going to be good. So, when youíre in a groove like that, itís a good feeling.
He interviewed me once before during the game in the middle of the year against Miami, I had scored a couple points. But, I think like on a big-time stage like that and have him come up to you and talk to you at halftime, you know, you feel a little good about it. You might not want to say anything at the time, but you definitely do feel good about it.
I donít know. We try. In the locker room we say, ďWe got to come out this way, we got to come out toughÖĒ And then it seems like it always happens that way. Itís not from a lack of focus. Itís nothing like that. We understand what we need to do. I just think itís a matter of us going out and doing it. You know, having a couple shots fall for us, getting a couple shots in the right places on the floor and just going out and executing at that time. Thatís the only way to solve that problem.
Aw man, this time of year it gets to be crazy. You can tell that everybody is focused on getting the job done whether itís going through you or around you. I think thatís what itís about this time of year Ė however you get it done, no matter how pretty or ugly it is, is getting it done. Those guys are all tough competitors so I knew I was going to leave the game with a couple scars and bruises, but I feel like thatís what itís all about. Just getting out there and scrappiní, getting Chauncey back and just being gritty. Iím cool, but right now my lip is just hanging a little bit. I think Iím going to be alright. I donít think Iíll need no stitches.
Weíre just going to watch film and get ready to play Game 5. I spent my day sleeping. I layed around until about 1 p.m., got up and watched a couple pieces of the game where I feel like I could do better on defense and then you know, I packed my bags and got ready to come to Detroit.
Last night it was crazy. I got more than ever. Numbers that I didnít know, numbers that I knew Ö you know, it was cool to see everybody rooting for me, pulling for me, and happy for me that I had a game like that.
I guess when I was young, I was always playing with the older guys and whenever I would play, Iíd always get beat up a lot and Iíd always get thrown around a lot and they used to call me a cry baby. And you know, ever since then, my mom always called me that. I guess thatís why it kind of stuck. It got warped from ďbabyĒ to ďboobie.Ē
I always want to wear No. 1 but when I first got here, Stephen Graham, another player on the team, he already had it and I picked No. 21 because thatís the number my dad wore when he was in high school and I was going to wear No. 21 for him. But once the number opened up, I wanted No. 1, because I always want that, because the No. 1 symbolizes to me being the best and I wear it with pride.
Drewís play was big. Heís a big part of the team and when heís knocking down shots and making it rain and doing all those things to get everybody going itís good to see. You can tell a lot of time when Drew is going, the entire team is going because he brings a lot of energy for us. Itís great to see. Z is the same way. When Z is playing well, weíre all playing well. And on down the list, when everybody contributes like that weíre a pretty tough team to beat.
Hands down, without having those three guys on the team, I donít know how far along I would have come to this point. E, any chance he gets, he tries to help me out and give me things that heís been through because when he first got to the league, he was in the same position I was. He was a second-round pick, you know, not really considered to do much and things like that, but just through hard work, he made it. I just think he sees some of those types of things in me and he just tries to help me out as much as he can. The same goes for David and Damon. All those guys, any opportunity they get, theyíre in my ear giving me things to do and helping me out. All those guys have been there and played in these types of situations, and just having them in my corner, I feel like I have one leg up on the competition.
We definitely feel like weíre going to use our last game as a boost. I definitely feel like weíre capable of beating this team. But, we do realize that theyíre a great team and theyíre great at home so weíre looking forward to going into a hostile environment and sticking together as a team and coming away with another win.
Hey this is Daniel Gibson. Iím a rookie on the Cleveland Cavaliers and this is my first playoff experience so Iíll be blogging with NBA.com to let you all in.
We expect them to come out with a lot of intensity trying to throw that first punch. Theyíre definitely a team that likes to hit first and see if you hit back, and if you donít hit back, theyíll finish you off. Weíre definitely going to come out looking forward to taking on that challenge.
You just got to stay ready because you never know when your number is going to be called, and when itís called you never know if youíre going to get that type of opportunity again. So, you know, before the game I try to get up as many shots as I can to stay ready and at any given time during the game, if Coach wants me to go in, I just try to go in and give my team a big push.
Man, itís different. You can tell as far as the intensity and you can tell by the time that each team puts in preparing for the other team. A lot of the looks that I got during the regular season, you donít get during the playoffs. So itís all about preparing yourself mentally to be able to go out there and give your best effort because teams are going to be locked in on what you normally do.
I thought it was a great play. I feel like LeBron drew the defense in and did what every player is supposed to do Ė he found the open man. Donyell had a great look at it, and Iím pretty sure nine times out of 10 that Donyell will knock that down. The time I hit a couple of those key shots at the end of the Nets game, LeBron was doing some of those same things to kick out to me. So I think, yeah, if we have that opportunity, nine times out of 10 that shotís going to fall.
I ended up watching by myself. It came out a little bit different than I had expected. I thought Boston was going to get the first pick. But with both them and Memphis getting knocked down to four and five, it kind of changed it up a little bit. I think Portland is going to get a great look at it, but you know, Iím a little biased because they already got my boy over there, LaMarcus Aldridge. So Iím looking forward to see with that theyíre going to do with that pick.
If they added Kevin Durant to the Trail Blazers they would probably become my favorite team to root for, other than the Cavaliers of course. LaMarcus is a good friend of mine and I talk to Kevin a lot and we got to play a little bit this summer. So, I probably be a little more biased hoping that Portland won more games.
Me, Iím kind of just laid back. I kind of joke around a little bit before the game, you know, mess around a little bit and you know, once itís around game time I go out and I try to get up as many shots as I can to get a good rhythm and get a good feel for the arena. You know, when the lights come on and itís time to perform, I just get out there and have fun. Itís a great time of year, everybodyís watching, so you want to get out and perform well. So I just go out there and try to have fun with it.