Utah Jazz: 3 potential options at point guard amidst Ricky Rubio news

Photo by Harry How/Getty Images
Photo by Harry How/Getty Images /
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Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images
Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images /

3. Promoting one of the backup point guards

One potential avenue that the Jazz could go down in the post-Rubio era would be promoting one of their backup point guards to fill the starting role. The two point guards that served as backups to Rubio in 2018-19 were Dante Exum and Raul Neto.

Exum just wrapped up his fourth NBA season with Utah, and would’ve played a decent amount of minutes if he hadn’t dealt with injuries throughout the year. When healthy, he served primarily as the No. 2 option at point guard behind Rubio.

In 42 appearances, including one start, Exum averaged 6.9 points, 2.6 assists and 1.6 rebounds in just under 16 minutes per game. He also carried marks of 41.9 percent shooting from the field, 29 percent from 3 and finished at 79.1 percent shooting from the free throw line.

The biggest thing when it comes to Exum and elevating him into any starting role is the fact that he hasn’t been able to stay healthy for the past few seasons. Exum has played in a combined 66 games over the last two years, making him unreliable when it comes to being able to stay on the floor.

Neto also just finished up his fourth season in the NBA, with all four coming in Utah — just like Exum. Neto spent the year as the No. 3 option at point guard on the depth chart, moving up as the second option when Exum was out with injuries.

In a total of 37 appearances, including one start, Neto averaged 5.3 points, 2.5 assists and 1.7 rebounds in just under 13 minutes a contest. He finished the year shooting 46 percent from the field, 33.3 percent from 3 and 84.8 percent from the free throw line.

When it comes to Neto, although the sample size is fairly small compared to other players, he has the ability to be more of a threat on the offensive end of the floor.

If the Jazz are looking to promote one of its backup point guards while also looking for someone who can boost them offensively, they might look at Neto over Exum solely based on that.

It’s not likely that Utah looks to promote from within when it comes to its current list of point guards on the roster, but it’s something worth looking into as a last resort. If the Jazz have to go down this route, Exum and Neto are the two prime candidates for promotions in 2019-20.