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Utah Jazz point guard Dante Exum, who suffered a separated left shoulder during the preseason, is weighing his rehabilitation options and hoping to avoid season-ending surgery, according to a report by ESPN.
An MRI of Exum’s shoulder revealed significant ligament damage, per ESPN and The Salt Lake Tribune.
Jazz officials and doctors have been doing their due diligence to see if there is a route Exum can take which doesn’t require surgery.
Exum averaged 6.2 points per game last season in 66 games played, including 26 starts. The fifth overall pick in the 2014 draft tore his ACL in the summer of 2015 and missed the entire 2015-16 campaign as a result.
The athletic guard has failed to live up to the hype that surrounded him in Australia. This is a crucial year for Exum, who will enter restricted free agency next offseason.
Exum needs to have a good season to show not only the Jazz, but the rest of the league that he can play and contribute at a high level in the NBA.
The stakes are too big for Exum in 2017-18, so it doesn’t come as a shock to hear he is trying to avoid going under the knife.
Jazz rookie guard Donovan Mitchell has been impressing teammates and coaches left and right with his athleticism and sound two-way play. New point guard Ricky Rubio had a poor preseason showing, but odds are he will start to produce once the regular season hits. Utah also has a third point guard, Raul Neto, on its roster too.