Utah Jazz: Five Potential Free Agent Point Guard Targets

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Utah Jazz Dante Exum Memphis Grizzlies Mike Conley
Mar 3, 2015; Memphis, TN, USA; Utah Jazz guard Dante Exum (11) drives against Memphis Grizzlies guard Mike Conley (11) during the first quarter at FedExForum. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports /

Undeniably, the Utah Jazz need more productivity out of the point guard position. Is Dante Exum’s return the answer or should the team hit the free agent market this summer?

For the third consecutive season, the Utah Jazz struggled to get adequate production out of the point guard position. After high hopes of a breakout season from former No. 5 overall pick Dante Exum, the Aussie tore his ACL, leaving the team in a backcourt quandary once again.

Whether or not Exum can return to form next season, the Jazz need more depth at the position. Be it a veteran to hold down the starting spot while Exum gets back into the swing of things or a capable backup to lead the second unit, the Jazz need something to get their point guard performance out of the cellar.

The solution could be in-house. After acquiring Shelvin Mack from the Atlanta Hawks at the trade deadline, the point guard averaged 12.7 points and 5.3 assists per game, while hitting 36 percent from distance in 28 games with Utah.

The Jazz hold the option on Mack’s contract for next season and have until June 30 to make a decision on whether or not to retain him.

There’s definitely a strong case to be made for doing so. Mack comes cheap and meshed well with the starters. He combined with Gordon Hayward, Rodney Hood, Derrick Favors and Rudy Gobert to outscore opponents by nine points per 100 possessions. Swap Favors out for Trey Lyles and that number jumps to 15.

Meanwhile, rookie Raul Neto surpassed expectations and developed into a consistent deep threat in 2015-16, but probably isn’t ready to play heavy minutes for a playoff team. If not for Exum’s injury, the Brazilian probably would have spent much of the season with Tibor Pleiss in the D-League.

So with that being the situation, Jazz GM Dennis Lindsey has some options. He may decide that Exum is ready to lead the team and that Mack is the backup, but free agency is also a possibility. So who is going to be out there this summer?

The list of realistic options is short and may lack the wow factor, but there are names worthy of discussion. Here are five potential free agent targets at the point guard position.

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