Story by Thomas Becker Photo: Memorial University Sea-Hawks
CHARLOTTETOWN - The Island Storm has announced Tuesday the signing of Daniel Gordon, an elite scoring guard out of Memorial University in St. John’s Newfoundland.
One of the greatest players to ever grace the hardwood once said, “I’ve always believed that if you put in the work, the results will come.” That man was Michael Jordan. For the Storm’s recent signee, the adage couldn’t be more true. The 24-year-old guard will get his first taste of professional basketball after five years of honing his craft at the collegiate level.
“I'm excited because this is the first step in a new chapter in my basketball life,” he said. “I made it to the next level and I want to prove to myself that I belong here.”
Gordon jumped on the scene with the Fleming College Knights of the Ontario College Athletic Association (OCAA) and made a name for himself as a perennial scorer. He dominated in his sophomore campaign and put up a league-high 29.6 points per game.
“I knew I had to carry a heavy load playing for them,” the Ajax, Ontario native said. “I accepted the challenge and found my identity as an all-around scorer.”
From a personal standpoint, he accomplished the goals he set out for himself with Fleming and felt the time was right to move on. The six-foot-two guard wanted another challenge and pursued an opportunity with the Memorial Sea-Hawks, where he learned to become a better team player in his role as sixth man.
“When I went to Memorial, our team had so much talent and I had to find new ways to impact the game,” he said. “I wasn’t discouraged coming off the bench, I just wanted to do anything to help the team.”
Gordon thrived as a reserve and still maintained his identity as a scorer. Each year, he increased his scoring averages, topping out at 18.9 points per game in 2017-18.
“Coming off the bench was easy for me, there’s not as much pressure as starting and my coaches still found shots for me.”
During his time with the UPEI Panthers, head coach Tim Kendrick coached opposite of Gordon for two seasons and knows what to expect from his newest guard.
“It’s great to have Daniel join us. He’s a very athletic guard with explosive ability and a high ceiling,” Kendrick said. “I think he has a chance to really excel at the pro level at both ends of the court.”
Under Kendrick, the former Ajax High School Player of the Year will find himself in a similar position with the Storm and knows this is an opportunity he can’t take for granted.
“This will be my first season as a professional and I’ll be surrounded by veterans, so I’d like to learn as much as a can,” Gordon said.
No matter how Gordon fits in with his new team, he’ll make the most of it and give it his all for the Storm in their quest for a title.
“I think I can be a spark plug and bring instant impact off the bench. I just want do the little things to bring success to the team.”