A Bird in Hand?

Cavs rookie Danny Ferry has been compared to Boston’s Larry Bird. Time will tell.
Forward, Cleveland Cavaliers, Rookie
Age: 23
Height: 6’ 10”
Weight: 230 Ibs.

College Career: Graduated from Duke University in 1989. Helped lead the Blue Devils to the NCAA Final Four in three of his four seasons. Winner of the Naismith Award his senior year and was a con¬sensus First Team All-American.

Acquired: Cavs acquired Ferry’s rights on November 16, 1989 from the Los Angeles Clippers, along with Reggie Williams, in exchange for Ron Harper, the Cavs’ first-round draft selections in 1990 and 1992 and the Cavs’ second-round pick in 1991.

Professional Experience: Played in the Italian League on the II Messaggero team in Rome during the 1989-90 season. Averaged 22 points and six rebounds per game.

Salary: Reportedly signed a 10-year, $34 million contract. Ferry neither con¬firms nor denies this figure: “What¬ever the exact amount, obviously it’s a lot of money to play basketball. Too much. But that’s the market, the system. I don’t expect the money to change me as a person. I know I don’t want it to. I didn’t have more material things than other people while I was in college and I was happy. Why should I screw it up by suddenly changing the way I live my life?”

Cavalier Fans’ Expectations of Danny Ferry: An NBA championship, more or less immediately

Danny Ferry’s Expectations of Danny Ferry: “I’m not the kind of player who can carry a team on his back to an NBA championship. Actually, that kind of player doesn’t exist anymore; there’s too much talent throughout the league. People compare me to Larry Bird. I like to think I can see the court like he does and that I understand the game something like he does. But Larry Bird has proven himself to be one of the most mentally tough athletes the world has ever seen. I can’t know right now if I have that same toughness inside me — but I want to find out. Of course I want the Cavaliers to be a championship team. But I can’t make any predictions. The only thing I promise the people of Cleveland is that I’m going to work my ass off.”

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