New-York Historical Society's Bill Shannon Dictionary of New York Sports

Category Archives: D

Rikki Dadason

Rikki Dadason (Soccer.  Born, Mossfellbaer, Iceland, Apr. 26, 1972.)  Ivy League career leader in goals (50), Rikhardur Dadason was also a member of Iceland’s national team (1991-93).  During his freshman year at Columbia, Dadason was hampered by a knee injury sustained the year before and scored only three goals in five varsity games.  But in 1993, he poured in a school-record 24 goals in 15 games (plus five assists).  Heavily marked thereafter by every opponent, Dadason scored 10 goals in 1994 and 13 in 1995.  He finished with 111 points (including 11 assists) in 47 career games.

Bill Dahlen

Bill Dahlen (Baseball.  Born, Fort Plain, NY, Jan. 5, 1871; died, Brooklyn, NY, Dec. 5, 1950.)  Following a superb eight-year stint in Chicago, where he once hit safely in 70 of 71 games (1894), William Frederick Dahlen came to Brooklyn.  Dahlen was the regular shortstop for the N.L. pennant winners in 1899 and 1900, though he was not the offensive force he had been.  He moved to the Giants in 1904 and sparked them to a pennant while driving in a league-leading 80 runs, although he hit just .268.  In 1905, the Giants again won the N.L. pennant, but Dahlen was hitless in 15 World Series at-bats.  (The Giants won anyway, in five games.)  He spent two years (1908-09) with the Boston Braves and then became the Dodgers manager for four seasons (1910-13).  Dahlen managed Brooklyn to sixth twice (1910, 1913) and seventh twice (1911-12) before being succeeded by Wilbert Robinson.  He was 251-355 as Dodgers manager.

Babe Dahlgren

Babe Dahlgren (Baseball.  Born, San Francisco, CA, June 15, 1912; died, Arcadia, CA, Sept. 4, 1996.)  In the final analysis, he was little more than a well-traveled journeyman of major league quality, but Ellsworth Tenny Dahlgren achieved a unique distinction.  On May 2, 1939, Dahlgren started at first base for the Yankees (and homered in the game at Detroit, a 22-2 Yankees win).  It was the first time since 1925 that anybody other than Lou Gehrig had been a starter at first for the Yankees.  Gehrig had ended his streak of 2,130 consecutive games played.  Dahlgren logged 144 games that season, hitting only .235 but driving in 89 runs.  The next season, he played every game (155) and raised his average to .265, but the Yankees finished third, ending their run of four straight A.L. pennants.  Dahlgren had joined the Yankees in 1937 but played only 30 games in two seasons before 1939.  On Feb. 25, 1941, he was sold to the Boston Braves to make way for Johnny Sturm (who lasted only one season).  Dahlgren had a 12-year career (1935-46) that started with the Boston Red Sox and, eight teams later, ended with the St. Louis Browns.  He hit .261 in 1,139 major league games.  The righthander had 82 career homers (27 with the Yankees).  Dahlgren also played 17 games with the 1942 Brooklyn Dodgers (batting .053).

Arthur Daley

Arthur Daley (Sportswriter.  Born, New York, NY, July 31, 1904; died, New York, NY, Jan. 3, 1974.)  Arthur Daley was the first reporter ever sent abroad by The New York Times on a sports assignment when he went to Berlin for the Olympic Games in 1936, but that was perhaps the least of his accomplishments during his 47 years with the paper.  On Christmas Eve 1942, Daley succeeded John Kieran as the sole author of “Sports of The Times” on a seven-day-a-week basis “until further notice.”  His first column appeared Dec. 27 that year and “further notice” came on the day of his death, when he was walking to the office.  In the interim, Daley authored some 11,000 columns and, in 1956, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for his work.  At that time, only Bill Taylor of the Herald Tribune (for his coverage of the 1934 America’s Cup defense) had been honored with a Pulitzer for a solely sports-related assignment.  Daley joined The Times fresh out of Fordham in 1927 and almost immediately was sent to Chicago, where he covered the second Jack Dempsey-Gene Tunney heavyweight title bout (the famous “long count” fight).  During his years with the paper, he was to write approximately 20 million more words on sports events of all kinds, although baseball was probably his favorite sport. He also wrote several books, including one in which he combined with his predecessor, Kieran, on the history of the modern Olympics.  Daley also had a special kindness for the Football Giants, whom he once served as a public address announcer.

George H. Daley

George H. Daley (Sports editor.  Born, New York, NY, Dec. 26, 1869; died, New York, NY, Feb. 8, 1938.)  Considered the longest-serving sports editor in New York newspaper history, George Herbert Daley edited sports pages for over 40 years at three major dailies.  Daley graduated Union College in 1892 as a civil engineer but found work at his father’s engineering company tedious.  He decided to go into the newspaper field in a city that then had more than two dozen dailies and was hired by the Evening Post for the sports staff, since he had been an athlete in college.  Daley spent three years (1892-95) at the Post under Charles P. Sawyer and became sufficiently skilled to be hired as sports editor at the Tribune.  In 1916, he moved to the more prestigious World, where he inherited such talent as Walter Trumball and Bill Hennigan.  When the World was sold to the Telegram Feb. 28, 1931, Daley went to the new combination, but not as sports editor.  Joe Williams (q.v.) remained in charge at the World-Telegram and, in September, Daley was hired as sports editor of the Herald Tribune, where he remained until his death.  At the World, Daley introduced an everyday column that he signed “Herbert,” giving impetus to the development of columns in morning papers.  His column was entitled “Sports Talk” at the Herald Tribune.  After his death, the rival Times paid him a rare tribute with an editorial page paean that read, in part, on Feb. 9, 1938, “His seasonal and seasoned comment was deeply respected not only by sports fans but by leaders in the athletic field, amateur and professional.”  The Times also extensively covered his funeral two days later.  His cousin, George (Monitor) Daley, worked on the sports staff of the morning World and, later, The New York Times.

Chuck Daly

Chuck Daly (Pro basketball.  Born, St. Mary’s, PA, July 20, 1930; died, Jupiter, FL, May 9, 2009.)  A successful college and pro coach, Charles Joseph Daly coached the Nets for two seasons and got them to the playoffs both years.  Daly coached Boston (1981-82) and Detroit (1983-92), winning back-to-back N.B.A. championships (1989, 1990) with the Pistons.  He was named Nets coach May 28, 1992, and was 88-76 (.537) in two seasons.  Daly resigned May 26, 1994, with a year remaining on his three-year contract to become a broadcaster.  He remained with the Nets as a consultant.  Daly had a successful career as a college coach before coming to the N.B.A.  He spent two seasons at Boston College (1969-71) and seven at Pennsylvania (1971-77), where he was 125-38, winning four Ivy League championships.  Daly was also the head coach of the 1992 U.S. Olympic team (the original so-called “Dream Team,” which for the first time in U.S. Olympic basketball history included profesionals) that easily won the gold at the Barcelona Games.

Irwin Dambrot

Irwin Dambrot (College basketball.  Born, New York, NY, May 23, 1928; died, Summit, NJ, Jan. 21, 2010.)  A 6’4” star out of Taft H.S., Irwin Dambrot became a top player on City College’s nationally-ranked teams of the late 1940s and a co-captain of the Beavers’ 1949-50 squad that won both the N.I.T. and N.C.A.A. championships, when the two tournaments were considered equal in stature.  Dambrot broke into the varsity lineup in 1947-48 for an 18-3 team, averaging 8.8 points per game as a sophomore.  He raised his average to 11.0 in 1948-49 but the Beavers fell to 17-8.  Along with Joe Galiber, Dambrot was chosen co-captain of the 1949-50 squad that was a surprise choice for the N.I.T. after a 17-5 season with most home games in the Garden.  In the N.I.T., C.C.N.Y. was 4-0 with a 69-61 victory over Bradley in the final.  Dambrot scored a game-high 23 points against the Braves.  After beating Ohio State and North Carolina State, the Beavers topped Bradley again, 71-68, for the N.C.A.A. title at the Garden, with Dambrot making a key defensive play in the last minute.  Although many of the team’s stars were named in the 1951 point-shaving scandal that rocked the sport, neither Dambrot nor Galiber were ever implicated.

Stanley Dancer

Stanley Dancer (Harness racing.  Born, Edinburg, NJ, July 25, 1927; died, Pompano Beach, FL, Sept. 8, 2005.)  During his lifetime, Stanley Dancer was described as “harness racing’s living legend,” and there was much merit behind the title.  In a career that started in 1945, Dancer won more than 3,700 times and became one of the sport’s most distinguished trainers and breeders.  From his driving debut at Freehold (N.J.), Dancer advanced to Roosevelt Raceway, when, on June 11, 1947, he won in the second race of the evening on his first drive.  Dancer was the leading money-winning driver in 1961, 1962, 1964, and 1966 and was chosen the H.T.A. Driver of the Year in 1968.  His winning horses captured purses worth over $27 million.  Among his major achievements were the winning of four Hambletonians on the likes of such famous horses as Nevele Pride, a Triple Crown winner and three-time Horse of the Year; and Triple Crown winners Most Happy Fella and Super Bowl.  He also drove such fabled horses as Albatross, Cardigan Bay, Su Mac Lad and Henry T. Adios.

Ken Daneyko

Ken Daneyko (Hockey.  Born, Windsor, Ont., Apr. 17, 1964.)  Drafted second (18th overall) by the New Jersey Devils in 1982, defenseman Kenneth Stephen Daneyko had a career that spanned virtually the entire first two decades of the team’s history.  Daneyko appeared in at least one game every season from 1983-84 to 2002-03 for the Devils, who came to New Jersey in a franchise shift from Colorado in 1982.  He played on the first 14 Devils teams to make the playoffs (including three Stanley Cup winners) and was the first Devils player to log 1,000 games with the club (he finished with 1,283).  Daneyko announced his retirement July 11, 2003, after a season in which injuries limited him to 13 games of the 24 played by the Stanley Cup champs in the 2003 playoffs.  He played only Game 7 of the final, in a symbolic appearance.  Daneyko played in 175 playoff games.  A lefthanded shot and a bruising, defense-oriented backliner, he scored just 36 goals and had 142 assists in his 20-season career, plus five goals and 17 assists in the playoffs.  Daneyko missed most of the 1997-98 season when he voluntarily entered the N.H.L. substance abuse program.  He won the Bill Masterson Memorial Trophy in 2000 for dedication to hockey.  Early in his career, he played in 388 consecutive games (a streak that ended Apr. 1, 1994).  He later joined the MSG Network as an analyst.

Dan Daniel

Dan Daniel (Sportswriter.  Born, New York, NY, June 6, 1890; died, Pompano Beach, FL, July 1, 1981.)  One of the most prolific and respected sportswriters in baseball and boxing, Dan Daniel got sidetracked on his way to becoming a doctor.  Born Daniel Margovitz, his name became a byline that said simply “By Daniel.”  While a college student, Daniel worked part-time at the New York Herald.  After graduation from City College, he worked on a succession of papers in the then newspaper-rich environment of New York, including the New York Press, and the Evening Mail.  At the Press, he worked for two influential sports editors:  Jim Price and Nat Fleischer .  His association with Fleischer was to last well over half a century. After the Press was sold in 1916, Daniel moved to The Sun and then the Mail.  In 1924, Daniel wound up working again for Fleischer, who by this time was sports editor of the Telegram.  In 1927, Fleischer was fired as sports editor and devoted the rest of his working life to his Ring Magazine (which he founded in 1922).  Daniel stayed at the Telegram through various mergers, including the absorbing of The World and, in 1950, The Sun.  But he developed a busy sideline writing boxing (and, sometimes wrestling) for Fleischer’s popular magazine.  One of the most facile writers in the industry during his heydey, Daniel also wrote millions of words for The Sporting News, including all of the editorials and columns signed by publisher J.G. Taylor Spink.  He covered the Yankees almost steadily from 1911 into the 1960s, becoming the dean of baseball writers.  His “Ask Daniel” column was a regular feature in the World-Telegram.  Daniel was chairman of the B.B.W.A.A. New York chapter from 1931-35 and the B.B.W.A.A. president in 1957.

About This Dictionary

The Bill Shannon Biographical Dictionary of New York Sports is an open database of sports biographies maintained by Jordan Sprechman and Marty Appel. We welcome public and scholarly contributions and suggestions.

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About Bill Shannon

A prolific author, wire service sports reporter, long time Major League Baseball official scorer, football statistician, sports museum founder, theatrical agency owner and public ... read more

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