Dante Exum will be a restricted free agent this offseason and the Jazz are hoping to re-sign their former No. 5 overall pick.
“We hope to retain him,” said Jazz GM Dennis Lindsey (via Mike Sorensen of the Deseret News). “Obviously there’s a lot of conversations and in a free agent market, it’s hard to predict. Dante’s done his job, he’s had some unfortunate things happen. We don’t think he’s injury prone — things happen to young players. He’s the right guy, he’s got the right level of talent. You don’t get the same package of speed and size. It’s our job to develop him but we’ll see what happens.”
Exum is unlikely to supplant Ricky Rubio as the starting point guard any time soon, so there may be a limit on what Utah is willing to pay him. The 23-year-old isn’t focused on his next payday right now. He’s simply trying to get better this offseason. “I think the Jazz want me back, so hopefully it all works out. My agent’s going to take care of that and I think for me as a player, I just need to control what I can control,” the point guard said.
Here’s more from the Northwest Division:
- The Jazz would also like to have Raul Neto back, but the soon-to-be 26-year-old may seek a greater role elsewhere, Sorensen relays in the same piece. “It’s always a time you’ve got to think, you got to look at all your offers and opportunities you have and try to pick the best one,” Neto said. “Right now, there’s nothing else I can do. Just keep working and waiting and make the decision I have to make. Sometimes it’s not only the player’s decision, there’s the Utah Jazz, so basically it’s in their hands. We’ll see.”
- Jon Krawczynski of The Atlantic wonders if the Wolves should try to trade Andrew Wiggins. The former No. 1 overall pick signed a five-year extension worth nearly $150MM, though the scribe hears that a Wiggins-DeMar DeRozan swap remains a possibility should Toronto look to make major moves.
- Does it make sense for the Wolves to deal Karl-Anthony Towns? Michael Rand of the Star Tribune isn’t so sure, but he notes that Towns hasn’t said anything to quiet down the rumblings that he and the team are “not in a good place.”