Cleveland Cavaliers: Grading Dante Exum’s 2019-20 play thus far

Cleveland Cavaliers guard Dante Exum looks for an outlet. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Cleveland Cavaliers guard Dante Exum looks for an outlet. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /
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Dante Exum, Cleveland Cavaliers
Cleveland Cavaliers guard Dante Exum reacts in-game. (Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Since he’s been with the Cleveland Cavaliers, Dante Exum has been decent, but has had trouble staying healthy. Here, we’ll grade his play with Cleveland to this point in the 2019-20 season.

We still do not know if we’ll end up seeing the Cleveland Cavaliers and other NBA teams, at least to some extent, have some sort of season resumption in 2019-20.

That’s in relation to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

As far as a few updates from Tuesday, though, there were a few from key reporters.

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the NBPA polled players and asked them essentially about their takes about wanting to play or not, of which he provided more detail in terms of the team scope.

Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium seemingly rebutted that report from Wojnarowski, though, saying how the “NBPA is not engaging in and has not authorized any formal poll of its players.”

From there, Charania did then hit on how a conference call featuring the NBA and NBPA, along with NBPA president Chris Paul and others would happen on Tuesday, at any rate.

Along those lines, Yahoo! Sports’ Chris Haynes reported that the likes of LeBron James, Paul, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Stephen Curry and others held a “private conference on Monday” and formed a “unified front in favor” of eventually having some sort of season resumption.

Charania also said how NBA commissioner Adam Silver is “targeting a season decision in 2-to-4 weeks,” on an NBA Board of Governors call. Woj would then add on Tuesday regarding how the league is looking to “standardize coronavirus testing,” once a return plan is in place, and did note how though momentum appears to be building for a season resumption, Silver said if a positive test “would ‘shut us down, we probably shouldn’t go down this path,'” so we’ll see.

Switching gears to looking back at the Cavs’ perspective regarding the 2019-20 campaign, though, here, I wanted to look at the play of rotational guard Dante Exum on both ends.

Exum was a piece, along with then-two future second-round picks, acquired in a trade with the Utah Jazz where Cleveland sent them the expiring Jordan Clarkson, and while Exum is not a bucket-getting bench player the likes of Clarkson, he has been decent as a defensive and ball-movement piece when he’s been able to go.

An issue with Exum with the Cavs, and as was the case with him having knee and shoulder injuries back in his Jazz days, has been Exum not being healthy.

Thus far with Cleveland, Exum has missed stretches of three games due to illness, and had missed Cleveland’s last eight games leading into the NBA’s COVID-19-induced hiatus because of a left ankle sprain. Hopefully, that injury has been healing properly.

So how has Exum been when he’s been able to go for Cleveland to this point this season, you ask?

We’ll get into that now, beginning the offensive end.