Daniel Horton

RCSI: 17 (2002)
Height: 6'2" (188 cm)
Weight: 198 lbs (90 kg)
Position: PG
High School: Cedar Hill High School (Texas)
Hometown: Cedar Hill, TX
College: Michigan
Current Team: Michigan
Win - Loss: 8 - 24


Orlando Pre-Draft Camp: Day 3 (Last Update: 10:46 AM)

Jonathan Givony
Jonathan Givony
Mike Schmidt
Mike Schmidt
Joseph Treutlein
Joseph Treutlein
Jonathan Watters
Jonathan Watters
Eric Weiss
Eric Weiss
Jun 08, 2006, 11:52 am
Horton had a terrible showing for himself in his second game of action. Will Blaylock’s defensive pressure made things difficult from the start as he challenged his shot after denying dribble penetration and stripped Horton in transition when Horton took his eye off of him. After about 8 minutes, Horton really became passive and didn’t show much else the rest of the game.

Daniel Horton NBA Draft Scouting Report

May 10, 2006, 02:31 pm
Horton knows how to use the athletic ability he has. He is more athletic than most think and has pretty good quickness with the ball is in his hands. On defense he has shown very good anticipation and quick reaction time when playing on the ball defense. Along with that, despite being only 6-2, his wingspan is solid which allows him rebound and play on the ball defense quite effectively.

For Horton to reach his full potential at the next level he will have to develop into more of a true point guard, and based on his current skill level that transition could very well happen. During his senior campaign he has proven he can set up teammates on the drive and dish and run a simple offense at times reasonably well. What makes Horton so dangerous as a versatile scoring point guard to bring off the bench is that he has the mentality and skill set of a shooting guard. He is wonderful running off curls to free himself for open jump shots. He also has the instincts and ability to get to the basket and finish strong. Another aspect of his game he improved as a senior is his free throw shooting, he has become an outstanding free throw shooter to the point where he is almost automatic. Thus the more aggressive he is going to the hoop, which he usually is, the more he can go to the line.

Horton is also extremely dangerous in the open court shooting short jump-stop shots; he can stop on a dime and pull up from mid range, and do so fluidly. That ability to stop quickly and rise up for a shot benefits him improvise in a set offense as well coming off curls and in transition.

He is also a fine ball handler, not being very flashy with the basketball, but just getting the job done. He is strong with the ball, using his body well to shield the defender and making it hard for opponents to pick his pocket. He is fairly trustworthy with the basketball, taking care of possessions and not making many foolish mistakes. Even though he is not a flashy ball handler, he has a strong crossover and can go strong to his left or right. He will get by defensive players mainly by using his strength and instincts, being able to utilize a great change of pace dribble and right when the defender goes for the steal, make a quick move and get around him. He changes gears when dribbling the ball very well, not going full speed blindly on every play, but rather being crafty and instinctive in getting to where he needs on the court. Horton also has a wonderful floater going to the basket that is almost impossible to block.

What stood out about Horton since his freshman year has been his perimeter shooting ability. He is a set-shooter who does not get a lot of elevation on his jump-shot, but is effective nonetheless. He has very good 3-point range, but his mid range game is where he is at his best. Going back to his ability to use a great jump stop, when he is dribbling full speed down-court he has no problems using pulling up for a quick stop and pop jumper. His quick release benefits him greatly in transition and when he is close to the hoop. A testament to his improvement as a senior, his percentages went up in ever shooting category, free throws, 3-point shooting and field goals.

Horton truly has the complete arsenal of scoring options. He can stop and pop, fade away or he can square up with his feet set from the 3-point line. He can also take it to the hoop and put up a floater or he can get to the line and display his great looking free throw shot.

Horton’s shooting ability would be somewhat limited if he could not get to the hoop when he is overplayed on defense. Over time he has greatly improved in that area. When going to the basket off the dribble he can get shots off in the lane over bigger players. He does this by using crafty floaters and surprising the defense with his quickness. He uses pump fakes well and is quite intelligent in how he sets up the players that are defending him. Generally Horton will not blow by defensive players and get to the hoop, but he is sneaky and will get to the basket when he wants nonetheless.

Horton’s passing ability is more of a mixed bag. He can make crisp passes and sees the floor well enough to find the open man when he’s interested in doing so. When compared to earlier in his career, he is now more willing to give the ball up and find his teammates more on offense. His passing arsenal includes knowing how to effectively use bounce passes. His ability to drive and dish effectively makes him a legitimate lead guard option in the NBA.

On the defensive end, when he is motivated he can be a very effective player. He plays very impressive deny defense at times. He is good face-guarding solid offensive players when he is motivated to do so. He is quite skilled at cutting down passing lanes and getting steals off long passes across court. Horton is not shy when going after rebounds either; he has the toughness and strength to rebound quite well for a guard. When he decides to turn on his defensive intensity, he is a surprisingly good on the ball defender.

One of the reasons Horton is not a 1st round caliber talent is because he is not an incredible athlete, especially for a PG. He has very well-defined basketball skills but he is not extraordinarily quick or explosive. He might have trouble against bigger and more athletic PGs in the NBA on offense and defense.

Another issue is his size; if he is projected as a PG he has pretty good size, however if he cannot effectively run an NBA team, he could have trouble. He would be very small for a SG and would have extreme difficulties on the defense end as well. Some teams may feel that he is too much of a combo guard for their liking.

Shot selection and overall decision making are two areas of major concern with him. When he was younger his shot selection was extremely poor, however he has improved in that area to a certain extent. Sometimes he still settles for 3-point shots when he would be much more effective penetrating the lane and setting up a teammate. Horton does not always display his passing ability even though it seems like he is capable of finding open teammates. If Horton perfects this part of his game he could improve his effectiveness and consistency greatly. He’s been wildly inconsistent in every facet throughout his career, though.

The defensive end could also create potential problems, as at times he is a very passive defender. He had a bad habit in college of leaving his man completely, cheating down and making his entire defense collapse. Horton can play very good deny defense when he wants to, however it seems like he does not want to often enough. Thus, if he is a defender that turns his defense on and off, he will not see very much playing time

Then there are the intangibles. Horton really did not win at all in
college, despite the fact that on talent, Michigan was certainly an NCAA tournament caliber team. His teams generally underachieved and did not reach their potential, and so did he for the most part as a college player. In terms of leadership, he has not shown much of it on the court. He is also not that tough of a player on defense, not really showing the willingness to go after it and do whatever it takes to get the job done.

Another major issue with Horton is the legal problems he’s had, causing him to miss a big chunk of his junior season. After missing a month early on in his junior year with a knee problem, Horton pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of domestic violence, and was suspended from Michigan for the rest of the season.

If he fails to erase that stigma that surrounds him, his draft stock could be affected because NBA organizations are generally not interested in already marginal prospects with a troubling past.

After coming into Michigan as a highly touted recruit and McDonald's All-American, Horton was named Big 10 freshman of the year after an outstanding season in which he showed the potential of a future top-20 pick, averaging 15.2 points, 4.5 assists and 3.7 turnovers a game. He was also named to the All-Big Ten second team that year. His team went 7-7 in their out of conference schedule after losing their first 6 games, but rebounded to finish 10-6 in the Big 10.

Horton fell off dramatically as a sophomore, seeing his numbers fall in every individual category including his already poor assist to turnover ratio. He averaged 12 points, 3.6 assists, 3 turnovers, and shot 36% from the field. His team went 23-11 on the year, but only 8-8 in the Big 10 and missed the NCAA Tournament once again.

His junior year Horton only played in 13 games, again averaging just 12 points a game, with 4.2 assists and 3.3 turnovers. Michigan went 13-18 on the season.

As a senior Horton had his coming out party once again on the national level, averaging career bests in every category except rebounds, with 17.6 points, 5.3 assists, 3.5 turnovers, a 1.51 a/to ratio, and shooting 45% from the field, 39.4% for 3 and 90% from the free throw line. He was named to the 1st team All-Big 10.

After a productive senior year and a solid showing at the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament, Horton has elevated his stock to the point that he has a good chance of being selected in the 2nd round. He will almost surely be invited to the Orlando pre-draft camp, and has a chance to help himself even further. He projects as 3rd point guard/lead guard with potential early in his NBA career with a chance to prove that he is capable of being a full-time backup. On talent alone, he is more than worthy and could end up being a steal down the road.

Portsmouth Invitational Tournament: Recap

Jonathan Givony
Jonathan Givony
Joseph Treutlein
Joseph Treutlein
Eric Weiss
Eric Weiss
Apr 11, 2006, 01:47 am
Daniel Horton had an impressive tournament, better than the statline suggests. He showed his point guard abilities both in transition and in the halfcourt, constantly creating open shots for his teammate through dribble penetration. Unfortunately, his teammates missed many of these open shots, skewing the stats against Horton. Horton also showed his strong outside shooting, but as he has done much of his collegiate career, he forced the issue too much from behind the arc, taking shots out of the flow of the offense. He will need to stray from this shoot-first mentality to succeed in the NBA. In terms of NBA skills, Horton has the total package at point guard should he consistently apply it. To go along with his offensive abilities, he’s an excellent on-ball defender who also shows good anticipation in the passing lanes.

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Jonathan Givony
Jonathan Givony
Mike Schmidt
Mike Schmidt
Feb 28, 2006, 03:19 am
It has been almost three years since Daniel Horton has been on any sort of NBA radar, but the Wolverine senior is capping off an up and down career with a fairly solid senior season. The high point of Horton's time in Ann Arbor may have come last Tuesday night, when he poured in 39 points and his Wolverines took down Illinois in a win that likely secured an NCAA Tournament berth.

Horton was all over the court, draining threes, hitting floaters in the lane, and getting to the basket. He scored 25 in the second half alone, including a personal 9-2 run after Illinois had come back and taken the lead midway through the half, and the last eight points of the game. Horton made all eight of his free throws, and was five of seven from beyond the arc. If you want to talk about heroic senior performances, you won't find many better than this.

Of course, there is a reason why a guy with every physical tool in the book is projected by most to go undrafted. Ever since an encouraging freshman season, Horton has been plagued with bouts of poor shot selection, awful decision making, and off the court issues. The volatile nature of Horton's game reared its ugly head on Saturday, when Horton put in a 4-16 shooting, 6 TO stinker in Michigan's loss at Ohio State.

Game-to-game inconsistency aside, Horton is having by the far the best season of his career, currently posting personal bests in assists (5.5), Ast/TO ratio (1.51), FG% (43.5%), and 3pt% (39%) - all the areas that have been serious issues for him in the past. Horton's natural strength, athleticism, and streak scoring ability are sure to get him a chance with the NBA this spring, likely starting with the seniors NBA draft camp in Portsmouth if he is wise enough to accept his bid. He is likely headed to the NCAA Tournament for the first time, and a nice stretch of games more like Tuesday's and less like Saturday's would likely cause scouts to forget about the past two seasons very quickly.

Daniel Horton is definitely a player to keep an eye on this March.

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