Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Exum to Train in L.A. Leading up to Draft; Looking Forward to 2016 Olympics
Australian point guard Dante Exum will train in Los Angeles in mid-February in anticipation of the NBA Draft.
Exum, who is currently in Australia and recently announced his plans to enter the Draft, is projected as a top-5 pick along with American college freshmen Joel Embiid, Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker and Julius Randle.
The training news was reported by Jared Zwerling of Bleacher Report and confirmed by a source close to Exum.
“Dante will be in L.A. to start his pre-draft training [in] mid-February,” the source said.
Exum is a huge fan of Kobe Bryant, and he would be working out in the same city as his hero, potentially getting the chance to seek advice from Bryant. Bryant’s agent, Rob Pelinka, also reps Exum.
Former NBA point guard Randy Livingston told Zwerling he sees Exum as a mix of several of the best point guards in the world.
“He’s sort of a cross betweenJohn Wall, Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook,” Livingston said. “He has Westbrook and Rose’s athleticism, but he’s bigger than them. He has John Wall’s long arms. Now, will he be as good as Derrick Rose? That’s up to him. I think he has the desire like Westbrook, although Westbrook has that fire, he has that killer instinct all the time. So I think that if [Exum] can tweak that and turn that on a lot more consistently, he’ll be good. It’s in him, so I think it’s just a matter of time.”
Exum also said he’s looking forward to competing with fellow Australians like Andrew Bogut, Patty Mills, Matthew Dellavedova and 2015 LSU commit Ben Simmons of Montverde (FL) Academy in the 2016 Olympics.
“Yeah, definitely,” he told Zwerling. “I’ve looked up to those guys for a couple years now, so being able to play with caliber players like that would just be an honor. And definitely being in the Olympic Games with all of the sport’s best competitors, it truly would be an honor.”
Follow Adam Zagoria on Twitter
Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.