2014 NBA Draft: Los Angeles Lakers Should Pass On Dante Exum

2014 NBA Draft

Sam Forencich-Getty Images

Rumors have been swirling around today that 2014 NBA Draft prospect Dante Exum may attempt to force his way to the Los Angeles Lakers. This sort of thing would be difficult to control, mainly because players cannot decide where they will be picked in the draft. Secondly, who knows if Los Angeles wants to pick Exum, since the team will likely end up in possession of a top five pick this year.

Any Lakers fan cannot speak about this story without remembering how Kobe Bryant forced his way to the Lakers subsequent to being drafted by the Charlotte Hornets years ago. Bryant basically went out a told the franchise that he would rather play overseas than play for the Hornets at the time. Obviously this turned out to be a fantastic move by the Lakers by acquiring Bryant, but not so good for Charlotte, as they barely received anything back in return.

Exum is certainly an intriguing player, being a 6-foot-6 point guard, but predicting how he will adjust to the NBA is just about impossible. The Australian’s name has been mentioned with other big named prospects such as Jabari Parker, Andrew Wiggins and Joel Embiid, however, people must remember that Exum has not played college basketball. The point has not showcased his talent against some of the current top prospects either. He is a foreign player and history has proven that foreign players are usually a hit or miss.

Teams can’t forget the disastrous move we were all witness to when the Detroit Pistons selected Darko Milicic ahead of players like Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. Possessing a top draft pick is something that most teams cannot afford to botch. Franchises receive that pick because they are rebuilding to compete again, so any selection that high in the draft is crucial for the team moving forward. Therefore, the Lakers are way better off taking a safer pick like an Embiid or Parker.

Nothing against foreign players, since we have had so many that have found success in this league, but the competition is simply different in other countries. Places that are not globally recognized for their basketball players usually do not emphasize the sport nearly as much as countries such as the USA or Spain, for example. The competition is not as steep and recruiting the foreign player is impossible. Even if Exum has the desire to be a part of the Lakers, the team must avoid picking him as there are so many alternates this summer.

Joseph Crevier covers the Los Angeles Lakers for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter, @RealJoeCrev, and Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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  • (d.d.lee)

    That’s all? Just the ‘Hit or Miss’ factor? I figured this article to be a bit more compelling. With maybe comparisons, strengths, weaknesses, alternatives to pick instead of Exum, pending on their spot and so on.

    • Joe Crevier

      I will be doing in depth profiles within the next few days

  • Jarrad Hurley

    Pretty sure NO player EVER drafted has ever been 100% guaranteed of success.. how many dodgy draft picks were great college players?… And is this mainly because he is Australian? Would you have said the same things about Kobe Bryant or Lebron James?

    All draft picks are hit and miss… every last one of them. Not just “foreign players”

    • Joe Crevier

      In Kobe and LeBron’s case, we were much more exposed to their game. We could watch and scout them basically whenever we wanted to. A player that is so far away like in Australia is just must tougher to judge. Sure no draft pick is a guarantee but players like Wiggins, Parker, Embiid we can pick them apart even with the most intricate detail. I’m not saying he isn’t going to be a solid player because he is Australian but since we do not have as much of a sampl

  • JCon

    Yeah this article is lacking. The point of not playing college hoops is moot as a point of refute, as Kobe didn’t either and the Lakers did OK there. I agree with the premise that the Lakers shouldn’t take Exum above 5th in the draft, but the reasons for accepting this premise are slightly lacking substance.

    • Joe Crevier

      I wasn’t as clear as I could have been. I’m not implying players that did not play college ball can’t play, but the fact that we are subject to such a lesser amount of scouting towards Exum than our American college players. It’s almost impossible to scout him since he’s so far away. There are only so many times you can send somebody out there. I just think th zlakers need to go the road that gives them the better chance at an impact player.

  • http://rantsofascorpio.wordpress.com/ Evan

    A. Every player is hit or miss.
    B. I recommend you look into the Kobe story. He didn’t tell Charlotte anything, and Charlotte DID get something in return (Vlade was a good center at the time, Kobe was a 17 year old who had never played an NBA minute): http://www.lakersnation.com/fact-vs-fiction-vol-i-the-true-story-of-how-kobe-became-a-laker/2014/03/06/

  • Yorkshur

    Why can’t Exum force his way on the Lakers, and Lakers still get a top 5 draft pick? That would mean Lakers could get say, Embid, and Exum in the draft.