Dante Exum missed the entire last NBA season after tearing his ACL just about a year ago playing for the Australian national team.
He is healthy now and has been cleared for basketball activities, but has announced he will not play for Australia this summer in the Rio Olympics, so he can focus on finishing his recovery and being ready for next season.
“At this stage the most important thing for me right now is to continue training,” Exum said in a statement released by the team. “It’s been great to be back on the court competing, and I’m really motivated to help the Jazz have a successful season this year. My support and best wishes will be with the Boomers this summer, and I look forward to future opportunities to represent my home country.”
This is what the Jazz wanted, and it’s probably the smart move for Exum long-term. His insertion into the starting lineup two seasons ago helped fuel the Jazz to a late run — he’s a quality defensive point guard, and he distributed the ball well to Gordon Hayward and other more efficient shooters on the team. His play was missed by an injury-plagued Jazz team this past season.
Australia has qualified for the Olympics already. They are expected to have Matthew Dellavedova running the point for the team. Australia will be without big man Andrew Bogut, who suffered a knee injury during a collision with J.R. Smith in the NBA Finals.