It was the scariest moment of the last season.
Marquis Daniels caught the ball about 10-feet out on the right wing, faced up on Gilbert Arenas and tried a little step through move. Daniel’s head hit Arenas’ arm.
And Daniels just collapsed to the floor, face down unable to move. It was instantly clear something was very wrong and the Boston Garden fell into an eerie hushed silence.
Through it all Daniels heard one voice, he told Jessica Camerato of CSNNE.com.
“I just remember I kept hearing Kevin [Garnett] telling me, ‘You’re gonna be alright. You’re gonna be alright,’” Daniels told CSNNE.com in a telephone interview. “I was like, ‘I can‘t move.’ He said, ’What do you mean?’ He kept telling me I was gonna be alright. I think that helped me out a lot, just hearing his voice telling me I was going to be alright. I stayed calm, I didn’t panic.
“It was a trying time for me. I didn’t take anything for granted. I was going to take everything seriously from now on.”
We learned later Daniels had spinal stenosis, a narrowing of the spinal column. He had to have surgery to repair that condition before he could return to the NBA, but he is moving along that path. He is recovering and whenever we have an NBA season again he will be ready. And he will be an unrestricted free agent with several suitors.
“I definitely would like to be anywhere where a team wants me,” he said. “I’m keeping my options open. I still root for the guys on the Celtics. It’s a great organization. I talk to Paul (Pierce) and Kevin and (Rajon) Rondo and all those guys. So I’d be open to coming back there as well.”