Grades for every Dallas Mavericks player ahead of the trade deadline

Dec 6, 2023; Dallas, Texas, USA; Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (77) celebrates with Dallas
Dec 6, 2023; Dallas, Texas, USA; Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (77) celebrates with Dallas / Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
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7. Dante Exum

Dante Exum has been a surprising delight for many Mavericks' fans this season. The 28-year-old guard is having the best season of his NBA career after spending the last two seasons playing overseas. Exum has blossomed into an entirely different offensive player than he was throughout his first six seasons in the NBA.

Exum is averaging a career-high 9.2 points points per game in only 19.7 minutes per game this season. That doesn't even tell the whole story for how well Exum has played offensively though, as he's scored in double figures in 11 out of the 14 contests that he's played 20 or more minutes in this season.

Exum has shown the ability to be a dynamic driver and cutter for Dallas, and he also brings great energy from a hustle perspective. Exum looks much more confident with the ball in his hands compared to his previous NBA stops in Utah and Cleveland, and he isn't hesitating when he gets a mismatch.

Exum has exhibited how well his physical tools translate defensively for Dallas, as the 6-foot-6 guard has been doing a great job at guarding the point of attack. With Dallas' guards constantly being in and out of the lineup due to injuries, Exum's ability to guard 1-3 has been invaluable for the Mavericks when he's been healthy.

While it's not on particularly high volume, Exum is shooting a career high 47.7 percent from three-point land for Dallas. That's an astonishing number when you look at where he was as a shooter during his previous NBA tenure, and if Exum even remotely keeps that up upon his return from injury then Dallas may have found a hidden gem. Exum gets an A only because he's dealt with some injury woes this season, or else it would be an A+

Midseason grades 7. A. Has been a great point of attack defender and driver. Has fit great in Dallas after getting bounced out of NBA for two years. Dante Exum