Earlier this week, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Utahh Jazz had agreed to trade Dante Exum and two future second round picks to the Cavs for Jordan Clarkson. Shortly after the deal was made official, Joe Ingles sent out a tweet to wish his former teammate and fellow Australian all the best in his next chapter.
“Always sucks losing a teammate, especially one from Australia,” Ingles wrote in his tweet. “Wishing Dante nothing but the best!! He has continued to work his ass off after numerous injuries, happy for his fresh start in Cleveland! Go to work kid & know we all have your back.”
The Jazz selected Exum with the No. 5 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. The Melbourne native played in all 82 games of his rookie campaign. However, he suffered an ACL injury in the summer of 2015 while playing for Australia. As a result, he missed the entire 2015–16 season.
An ACL isn't the only injury that Exum has dealt with throughout his NBA career. In 2017, he underwent shoulder surgery. And in 2018, he sustained an ankle sprain, which led to a bone bruise and a 25-game absence. He eventually returned to action, but yet another injury got in his way. Four days after taking the court again, he suffered a partially torn patellar tendon in his right knee. He made his debut this season on November 18.
The Cavs are an interesting landing spot for Exum — if he can remain healthy. With Collin Sexton and Darius Garland running the starting backcourt, Exum could be utilized as a versatile sixth man, just as Clarkson was.
Exum's numbers for this season aren't great, as his role with the Jazz had diminished due to his injuries. He played in 11 games, averaging 2.2 points on 43.5 percent shooting from the field (33.3 percent from beyond the arc) and 1.1 rebounds in 7.5 minutes per outing.
Conversely, Clarkson should be a fine addition to Utah's rotation, as he's a proven scorer. He'll likely play behind Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley Jr. in the backcourt.