It’s always unfortunate when an athlete suffers a serious injury while representing their national team. That happened on Tuesday, when Jazz guard Dante Exum tore his ACL during a game against Slovenia for the Australian national basketball team. Rumors swirled around about the extent of Exum’s injury for a few days, but it became official today.
While Exum struggled at times getting adjusted to the NBA – ESPN named him the worst starting point guard in the Association – he did show that he had the potential to be a really good floor general somewhere down the line. Exum only turned 20 last month, so some growing pains were expected, as he averaged 4.8 points, 2.4 assists, 1.6 rebounds, and 0.5 steals in 22.2 minutes per game. He played in every game and started half of Utah’s 82 contests last season.
There’s no word on how long Exum will be out, and according to Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey, discussions about bringing someone in to replace Exum haven’t happened yet. Fortunately, Utah has some guys in-house who can potentially replace the No. 5 pick in the 2014 Draft, like Trey Burke, Alec Burks and Rodney Hood, but it’s still unfortunate that one of the league’s bright young talents will likely be out for an extended period of time.