Oops, He Did It Again: McDaniels' Costly T's Pile Up Unheeded
Jaden McDaniels drove hard to the basket, left Arizona's Zeke Nnaji in his wake and dunked in such an explosive manner the crowd at Alaska Airlines Arena was momentarily speechless before it let out a cascading roar.
It was an incredible play, coming midway through the second half of a highly competitive Pac-12 game.
Unfortunately, McDaniels had to do something counterproductive to satisfy his own ego. He had to open his mouth. He yapped at his badly beaten opponent and was T'd up immediately.
Everything good the talented freshman forward had done with his physical gifts -- giving Washington a 57-48 lead and putting the Huskies on the verge of pulling away -- was wiped out by his taunting.
Arizona made two free throws from the technical foul assessed. The Wildcats cashed in with two more foul shots by keeping possession. A UW missed shot and a turnover later, and Jamarl Baker Jr. drained a 3-pointer and the visitors had pulled within 57-55.
Not even a minute had expired from McDaniels' dunk and the game had radically shifted to Arizona.
McDaniels' punishment: the willowy one with the blank stare was pulled from the game, walked defiantly to the end of the Huskies bench and sat down -- where he served all of 58 seconds of punishment.
The scorecard: This was McDaniels' fifth technical foul of the season, each marked by different levels of immaturity.
The damage: His actions have directly contributed to three UW defeats.
His first technical foul came against Montana when he exchanged shoves with an opposing player.
He got caught tapping a Hawaii player on the back of the head on the foul line.
Seated on the bench, McDaniels threw a basketball hard at a referee, leading to a 66-64 defeat to UCLA.
At Utah, he hit a guy in the back of the head with a roundhouse swat after the whistle had blown, leading to a late six-point play and a 67-66 loss to the Utes.
One of the underlying issues here is that UW's Mike Hopkins is a players' coach, which has made him an enabler of sorts, allowing this costly misbehavior to continue.
Hopkins' reactions to McDaniels' technicals have ranged from indifference to dismissive.
Jaden's not a bad kid.
The ref was having a bad day.
I don't see a problem.
That stuff happens.
The Huskies are in the midst of a miserable 12-10 season.
A lot of little things have contributed to it.
Any guesses why?