But really, how good is Exum? Is he really worth the hype? What's his likely potential? And finally, does he play WITH Burke, or REPLACE Burke, or BACKUP Burke?
Mr. Exum, an analysis
I'm not going to analysis with stats on him, because well, he doesn't have any solid stats besides those U19 FIBA games. So instead, let's go with what i see. Exum, right now, is a slasher (like D.Rose) with not much of a jumpshot at all. He is VERY athletic, and has heaps and heaps of defensive potential. When you're 6'6 with a 6'9 wingspan (and he can still grow, look at Giannis Antetokounmpo), you're bound to have it anyway. He is quite skinny as well. But if there's sometime that you CAN work on, it's shooting and bulking. So Exum can definitely can improve, and can be a potential superstar.
- Fast fast fast. He is the definition of a one man fastbreak. Extremely explosive, and is also laterally quick. This means he is a pest defensively, and a steal would basically lead to a foul or score. These are good signs, especially if Coach Snyder wants to run a quick, high-tempo offense (which seems to be the case).
- Defensive Potential. His reach means he constantly pesters the opposing ball handler, and can handle his stuff in the paint (both blocking and rebounding). Basically, he can block, steal and rebound. And that's another great sign.
- Great slashing/finishing. As i said, he is like Derrick Rose. His size means he can definitely finish at the NBA Level, and would provide the drive and kick assist. We lacked finishing when we ran with Burke, so this would definitely help the Jazz.
- Age. 18 is very young, but so was Kwame Brown (just joking). Most people who come out of his institution have been successes though (patt mills, bogut, longley).
- Jumpshot. It's not terrible, but it's enough for people to sag off him. He also has a less than impressive 3 point shooting. But as i said before, if there's something you can work on in the league, it's that jumpshot.
- Size. No, i'm not talking about his reach and all that. I'm talking about how skinny he is. Even though he can score in the low post, I just don't see that happening in the NBA level (which is why i didn't write low-post offense as an upside). He needs more strength, and luckily, this is something he can work on.
- Assist. Some say he can create offense. But he really has an awful assist turnover ratio. Maybe now that he'll have better teammates he might be better. But well, sometimes he tries to do to much and turns it over...so yeah...i think passing is something to work on(1.65:1 Ast:TO ratio). He has great vision though, he just needs to work on his choices at times.
- Mystery. We all know this, he is the international man of mystery. We don't know much about him, will he be good or bad? No one really knows.
So, bust or hit?
Well he could be a bust. But really, how bad of a bust can he be? He will still be able to provide great defensive presence, even if he has no offense. And that's something. Would Aaron Gordan really have been better (as some have suggested)? No. It's the same deal, he could end up busting and just be a defensive presence. It's just that Dante could have more potential. A lot more potential.
Burke or Exum?
Ok, since i do live in Australia, i could be bias here. But i do think that Exum should take over Burke as the starting PG, not start as a 2. Burks is a natural 2, and i think Exum-Burks would be a much better pairing. Exum most probably has a higher ceiling, and has a better NBA body. So i think once Exum adjust to the NBA Level, i think Burke should be a bench player. I think Burke can be a terrific bench option, but i'm not so sure about Exum, since Burke is more instant offense than Exum. The fact that Exum will most probably be better defensively and on the fast break would also seem to fit into Coach Snyder's system better, so well, yes, I would take Exum instead of Burke.
POLL: Which lineup would you want? Comment if you have other ideas.