It was a grind for first-year Northern Arizona Suns guard Daniel Dixon. A right ankle injury in training camp forced him to miss the Suns’ season-opener. Then, right when he was playing his best basketball of the season, he injured his left foot, causing him to miss 20 straight games. Through the injuries though, Dixon was able to salvage his 2018-19 campaign.
Dixon was acquired by the Suns in a trade just before the 2018 NBA G League Draft in October. For the Maine Red Claws in his rookie year, Dixon averaged 13.3 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists in 33.3 minutes per game in 46 games (25 starts). He ended the year with his best month, averaging 16.0 points, 6.4 rebounds and 4.3 assists in March, including his first career triple-double on March 13 (17 points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists).
Hampered by the ankle injury to start his Suns’ tenure, Dixon made his debut on Nov. 6 and worked his way back into form. He scored in double figures for the first time in just his second game, and in an early three-game stretch, he averaged 16.0 points on 63.6 percent shooting, including a 7-of-8 shooting night on Nov. 16.
Through the 2018 MGM Resorts NBA G League Winter Showcase in mid-December, Dixon had the fourth most double-digit scoring games on the team. His last game before the left foot injury was Dec. 21. He returned on March 1, and by March 10 he looked back to his old self. Against the Texas Legends that day he notched 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting (3-4 3PT), three rebounds and three assists.
His best outing in the second half of the year came on March 16 against the Rio Grande Valley Vipers. He tied his second highest scoring output of the season with 18 points on 6-of-11 shooting (3-6 3PT), also recording his second most rebounds of the year (eight).
The 25-year-old averaged 8.9 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.2 assists this season in 29 games (10 starts). He demonstrated range and play-making ability in 2018-19, so look for a bounce back season out of the William & Mary product.