Australia's Dante Exum creating NBA Draft buzz

Australia's Dante Exum creating NBA Draft buzz
May 17, 2014, 8:00 pm
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CSN Staff

Dante Exum is a fan of Michael Jordan, and for more reasons than the future NBA rookie idolizes the best to ever play the game.

The 6-foot-6 Australian guard is projected to be a top-10 pick in June's NBA Draft, and part of the reason he's so coveted is his work ethic. That work ethic, he told reporters at this past week's NBA Draft Combine, stems from the kind of player Michael Jordan was.

That's because his father, Cecil, was a teammate of Jordan's at North Carolina. Cecil has shared stories with Dante about the way Jordan tirelessly worked.

"It's fascinating, and I just always remember how he said M.J.'s work ethic and how he worked," Exum said. "And I think that's kind of spurred me to work hard to get to that level."

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Here's what Bulls Insider Aggrey Sam wrote about Exum Friday:

Australian Dante Exum is regarded as the top available guard in the draft, though most observers haven’t seen him play. Even video footage of him is scarce and in the two showings in which most NBA personnel saw him play—last spring’s Nike Hoop Summit all-star game in Portland and last summer’s FIBA under-19 world championships in Prague—he functioned as more of a scorer.

[MORE: Players boost their stock at NBA Draft Combine]

But the 6-foot-6 Exum, whose length and quickness were outstanding at the combine, believes that while he can play both backcourt positions, he’s more of a point guard than a shooting guard.

“I feel more comfortable with the ball in my hands, playing point guard,” said the potential top-five pick, the son of Michael Jordan’s former University of North Carolina teammate. “I’ve played the position for a couple years now and that’s where I feel most comfortable.”