Exum headed into NBA draft

One of the best remaining unsigned seniors is off the board, but it's not to college and it's hardly a surprise.

Scintillating Australian guard Dante Exum will bypass American college basketball and proceed directly into the NBA draft, according to a report by ESPN.

Unlike prospects within the United States, who must abide by the NBA-mandated age minimum, Exum slots under a different set of rules because he's an international prospect and will be eligible for this spring's draft.

According to various mock drafts, and obviously depending in part upon the results of the lottery, Exum could go as high as the overall top five. Given the perceived strength of the draft — which includes a very strong freshman class along with choice others such as Marcus Smart — that's quite a bold assessment of Exum's game.

And that's the rub. Exum would have risked his blue-chip status by participating in college basketball, where any limitations (his jump shot?) might have become exposed. He has played versus American competition but not nearly to the extent of his United States peers. This way, he eliminates most of the risk and assures himself a big payday and lucrative, guaranteed contract.

Tough to argue with that.

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