NBA rumors about the Utah Jazz and a Dante Exum injury aren’t good. It appears that the Jazz may have lost Exum for the year, due to a separated shoulder he suffered against the Phoenix Suns on Friday night (Oct. 6). Exum was supposed to be an important part of the roster for the Jazz, helping to lead the second unit and serving as the backup point guard to the newly-acquired Ricky Rubio. His injury will be difficult one for the team to deal with.

A report by ESPN stated that the injury took place during a drive to the basket, with Exum winding up on the floor in pain.

Tests were done on Exum, with an MRI revealing a separated shoulder and ligament damage. Jazz officials and doctors will discuss on Saturday (Oct. 7) the plan moving forward. This will include a schedule for his recovery and rehabilitation, but it clearly means this is going to be a long-term loss for the team.

Exum and his time with the Jazz

Dante Exum was the fifth overall selection in the 2014 NBA Draft. He played 82 games during his first season with the Utah Jazz, starting 41 of them, and averaging 4.8 points, 2.4 assists, and 1.6 rebounds per game. While playing for the national team in Australia (his home country), he tore his ACL in the summer of 2015. That caused him to miss the entire NBA season that followed.

Last year, appearing in 66 games for the Jazz, Exum averaged 6.2 points, 2.0 rebounds, and 1.7 assists per game.

Exum just turned 22, so he still has a lot of basketball in his future, underscoring that his best seasons may come later. Missing the entire 2017-18 NBA season won’t help with his development, though, and the Utah Jazz may start hearing murmurs about this draft selection turning into a bust.

NBA rumors about the team looking to acquire another guard to come off the bench may not be that far behind this news. Rookie guard Donovan Mitchell could also see an expanded role.

How are Utah Jazz doing in preseason games?

Through three NBA preseason games, the Utah Jazz are still undefeated. Only one of those games came against league competition, though, as they took on Sydney and then Haifa in the first two contests.

Beating the Phoenix Suns on Friday (Oct. 6) was certainly a positive outcome though. Utah has two more preseason games, coming against the Suns on Oct. 9 and then the Los Angeles Lakers on Oct. 10.

The regular season schedule for the Jazz begins on Oct. 18 against the Denver Nuggets. The team then has games against the Minnesota Timberwolves, Oklahoma City Thunder, and Los Angeles Clippers over the next week. It will be a good barometer for where the team stands, but there are a number of NBA rumors already suggesting the team could be good enough to make it right back to the playoffs. The division did just get tougher, though, as OKC added Carmelo Anthony and Paul George this offseason.