Gibson averaged 25.5 points per game and 9.3 assists per game while leading Jones High School in Houston, Texas to a 31-4 record and the Texas Class 4A state title as a senior. It marked the school's first state championship since 1965. Gibson graduated sixth out of 212 students in his high school class, and was a member of the National Honor Society.
Gibson starred as a guard in college basketball the University of Texas at Austin. In his two seasons with the Longhorns, he scored 935 points, including 175 three-point field goals. Gibson made 101 threes during the 2005-2006 season, including 9 of 12 against the Baylor Bears on January 21, 2006. It was one short of the Texas record of 10 set by Al Coleman against Kansas State in January 1997. He scored a personal-high 37 points in that same game.
Gibson played two seasons at Texas and averaged 13.8 points, 3.6 rebounds and 3.5 assists in 68 games (all starts). He was named Honorable Mention All-America by The Associated Press following his sophomore season. Gibson averaged 13.4 points, 3.6 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game as a sophomore. He earned First-Team NABC All-District 9 honors and was named All-Big 12 Third Team. He set a school record for most three-point field goals made in a season (101). He was one of 16 finalists for the Bob Cousy Award, given to the nation's top point guard. He sank at least four three-pointers in a game on 10 occasions. Gibson was named the Big 12 Freshman of the Year after his first season, averaging 14.2 points, 3.6 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game. He was also named All-Big 12 Third Team and became the first freshman in school history to lead Texas in scoring. On June 7, 2006, Gibson announced his decision to forgo his two remaining years of college eligibility and enter the NBA Draft.
On June 29, 2006, Gibson was drafted in the second round with the 42nd overall pick of the NBA Draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers. After a May 2006 pre-draft workout with the Cavs, Gibson canceled his remaining workouts with other teams and refused to work out for any other team before the draft. It is believed this was the reason Gibson fell to the second round after some thought he might be drafted in the first round. He joined a Cavaliers backcourt that was the worst in the league in scoring the previous season.
In his rookie season, Gibson averaged 4.6 points per game and led all rookies in three-point field goal percentage, shooting 41.9%. Daniel contributed in helping the Cleveland Cavaliers reach the NBA playoffs. Cavs coach Mike Brown gave Gibson his first place in the starting line-up on December 6, 2006, against the Toronto Raptors. He finished the game with 18 points, 5 rebounds, and 2 assists. Overall, Gibson started 16 games and averaged 8.8 points on 53.9% shooting in his starts.
Gibson had his first big playoff opportunity in game 3 of the 2007 Eastern Conference Finals against the Detroit Pistons. He scored 9 points, including two three-pointers. He also grabbed 2 rebounds, blocked 1 shot, and had an important steal from Tayshaun Prince late in the fourth quarter. He followed this in game 4, scoring 21 points, which came from only 6 field goal attempts. Gibson was also 12 of 12 from the free throw line.
inals for the first time in franchise history. Gibson was mentored in defensive skills by veteran teammate Eric Snow in the 2006-07 season.
His first start in the playoffs came in the third game of the 2007 NBA Finals, after an injury to Larry Hughes. He started the following game as well, in which the Cavaliers lost the championship.
Gibson played in 58 games, starting 26, averaging 10.4 points, 2.5 assists and 2.3 rebounds per game. He scored a season-high 26 points on November 20, 2007 against the Milwaukee Bucks. Gibson had a career-high six three-pointers against the New York Knicks on November 2, 2007, and a career-high eight assists against the Washington Wizards on December 5, 2007. Gibson ranked fifth in the NBA in three-point shooting percentage, making 44.0% of his three-point attempts. Gibson missed 18 games in February and March due to an ankle injury suffered when he and the Indiana Pacers' Travis Diener dove in the lane for a loose ball in the second quarter of a Cavs win over the Pacers. He returned to action on March 29, 2008 against the Detroit Pistons, scoring only 1 point in 18 minutes.
In game 5 against the Boston Celtics, in the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals, Gibson separated his shoulder and missed the final two games; the Cavaliers lost 4-3 in the series. Gibson said missing game 7 of the Boston series still haunts him: "I've had a lot of sleepless nights just wondering where I could have helped the team."
Gibson was selected to participate in the Rookie Challenge (Sophomore team) and the Three-point Shootout during the 2008 NBA All-Star Weekend in New Orleans.
During the first half of the Rookie Challenge, Gibson tied the record for total three-pointers made, despite not being a starter in the game. He later set the record in the second half with eleven total three-pointers, finishing the game shooting 11-20 from beyond the arc. Gibson was named MVP of the game, finishing with 33 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals.
Gibson finished in second place in the Three-point Shootout. He advanced to the final round by scoring 17 points in the first round, which tied him with Dirk Nowitzki for second place. In the final round, Gibson again scored 17 points, but it was not enough. Defending champion Jason Kapono tied the 22-year shootout record of 25 points for the victory.
On June 10, 2008, Gibson had surgery on his ankle in Houston. On July 16, 2008, the Cavaliers signed Gibson to a five-year, $21 million contract.
On November 26, 2008, Gibson scored his 1,000th career point in the Cavs' game against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Gibson is the son of Byron and Cheryl Gibson. His father played basketball for the University of Houston. Gibson and his wife, Keyshia Cole, have a son named Daniel Hiram Gibson Jr. The couple's 2011 wedding was filmed and aired on their BET reality TV series Keyshia & Daniel: Family First on October 9, 2012. The couple later separated in 2014.
On July 29, 2013, Gibson turned himself in to New Orleans police to face a charge of second degree battery related to an incident that took place earlier that month. His attorney declined to comment on the matter, but police said Gibson struck a man, breaking his jaw, in an altercation at a local night club.
On March 9, 2015, Gibson announced his retirement from basketball to focus on his rap career.
In 2017, Gibson and Cole were featured in the VH1 reality TV show "Love & Hip Hop Hollywood."