Dante Exum returns
|Jayme Markus||Mar 16, 2018|
Dante Exum is back!
Playing his first game of the NBA season, Exum put on an encouraging performance as the red-hot Utah Jazz drubbed the Phoenix Suns 116-88.
Coming off the bench, Exum finished the game with 10 points (3-7 FG, 0-1 3PT, 4-6 FT), 3 rebounds and 2 assists in 14 minutes of action.
The last time Exum played an organised game of NBA basketball was over five months ago – coincidently also vs the Suns during the preseason - when TJ Warren leapt into Exum’s airspace to block his shot and separated his shoulder on the landing.
In his return game, Exum played with aggressiveness on the offensive end, repeatedly attacking the basket which saw him rewarded with free throws and layups.
He had a scary moment at the end of the third quarter as he hard on his back and arm after skying for a layup and colliding with Josh Jackson mid-flight.
Thankfully Exum sprung to his feet and jogged off the pain, much to the relief of the Utah crowd and Aussies basketball fans everywhere.
Although he looked understandably rusty at times defensively and lacked polish with some of his finishing - Exum looks like he'll be an exciting addition to the surging Jazz in their fight for a playoff spot and beyond.
Getting Jingling with it
As Joe Ingles goes, so go the Jazz.
Ingles has been a major catalyst for the Jazz becoming the NBA’s hottest team. He has raised his game to another level over the last two months and helped lead the Jazz to 20 wins over their last 22 games.
And have we mentioned he is the NBA’s most accurate 3-point shooter!
Against the Suns, Ingles put up 17 points (6-13 FG, 4-9 3PT, 1-2 FT), 3 rebound, 2 assists and 2 steals in 31 minutes.
He was in the thick of it when things got a bit heated on the court too.
After teammate Ricky Rubio was bizarrely set upon by a couple of frustrated Suns players for no obvious reason, Ingles was quick to arrive in support.
Both Suns players were ejected from the game, while Ingles was awarded a technical for his part in trying to stop the attack (much to his displeasure).
With Exum back in the team, it's going to be fun to see how far the rising Ingles and Jazz can go.