Utah Jazz: Dante Exum Won't Return Against 76ers
Utah Jazz point guard Dante Exum has been plagued by left knee tendonitis recently.
The Utah Jazz will be back in action on Thursday night against the Philadelphia 76ers. Although the team seems to be getting healthy (at long last), they’re still not at 100 percent. One player who won’t be in action when the Jazz tip-off at Vivint Smart Home Arena is point guard Dante Exum.
He joins Alec Burks on the scratch list for the game. Meanwhile, starting point guard George Hill is currently listed as questionable.
Exum last played in Utah’s December 20 loss to the Golden State Warriors. He’s missed the last three games as he struggles with left knee tendonitis. It’s an issue that has reportedly plagued him since before he was drafted in 2014. According to KSL.com’s Andy Larsen, he was reevaluated by team doctors on Wednesday and deemed unfit to return.
The 21-year-old will be evaluated once again on Saturday.
Exum is averaging 6.4 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game on the year. He returned to the Jazz after missing all of the 2015-16 campaign thanks to an ACL tear in his right knee. Although his progression since returning has been slower than some would like, he’s started 16 games in relief of Hill this season.
Depending on what happens with Hill before the game, Shelvin Mack could be the Jazz starter at point against Philly. Mack is averaging 12.0 points, 4.2 assists and one steal per game as a starter this season.
Coincidentally, Joel Embiid will also miss the game. The Sixers’ center was the No. 3 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, while Exum was selected by the Jazz at No. 5. Unfortunately, both players’ young careers have largely been defined by injuries to this point.
Hopefully Exum can get back on the floor sooner rather than later. At this juncture, he needs consistent minutes to get back into the swing of things.
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The Jazz (19-13) and 76ers (7-23) tip-off at 7 PM on Thursday night. Stay with Purple & Blues for all your game info.