NBA / Jan 17, 2014 / 4:00 pm

5 NBA Teams That Could Save Jimmer Fredette’s Career

Jimmer Fredette

Jimmer Fredette (Marc Lebryk/USA TODAY Sports)

For those who follow college basketball, we all remember the 2010-2011 season. “Jimmermania” they called it in Provo, Utah on the campus at BYU. Whenever Jimmer Fredette scored a high number of points versus opponents, Cougars fans would often chant “you got Jimmered!” The chant first broke out on the night of Jan. 26, 2011 after a 43-point performance, leading his squad to an upset against No. 4 San Diego State, handing the Aztecs their first loss of that season. That night, even Kevin Durant, arguably one of the NBA’s best scorers, took notice of the Aztecs getting “Jimmered”

After a senior year averaging 28.6 points and 4.3 assists per game and keeping the BYU ranked in the top 10 AP poll to end the season, Jimmer finished the season as the nation’s leading scorer. It wasn’t to anyone’s surprise he won the 2011 Naismith College Player of the Year award, an award with pretty high honors — beating UConn national champion Kemba Walker for it — one that Michael Jordan, Larry Bird and Bill Walton had won during their college years.

When NBA Draft day came, all but one team was seriously sold on whether Jimmer could bring “Jimmermania” to the next level. For those who followed the NBA Draft, we all remember the Sacramento Kings being so sold on him that they even worked out a three-team trade during the draft, demanding for the Milwaukee Bucks to select him for them with the 10th overall pick. What happened next? Merchandise sales shot up more than 540 percent, immediately selling out of No. 7 jerseys in the Sacramento area.

For a top 10 NBA Draft pick and a college national player of the year, no one really expected “Jimmermania” to continue in the NBA. In his first two seasons in Sacramento, he averaged 7.4 points per game in an average of playing just 16:32 minutes per game. At the beginning of this season, the Kings declined to pick up his fourth year team option making him an unrestricted free agent after this season. Jimmer may consider himself a point guard, but is behind in the Kings rotation behind starting point guard Isaiah Thomas who the Kings had drafted the same year with the last overall pick, and is even playing behind rookie shooting guard Ben Mclemore this season. Currently in his third year, Jimmer is averaging a career low 5.7 ppg playing in just 11.7 mpg. With Isaiah Thomas’s career stats rising, it became an easy decision for the Kings to decline Jimmer’s fourth year player option in his rookie contract.

So where does Jimmer go from here? Obviously his game doesn’t seem to be translating with the big boys. The days of getting “Jimmered” are long history, and if Sacramento doesn’t trade him this season, Jimmer will have to find a new specialty, a way to become a threat to teams from scoring the ball consistently to improving his speed, ballhandling, and passing ability.

He needs to slowly work his way back into a rotation with the goal of becoming an NBA starter. He could certainly take some notes from NBA vet J.J Redick on how to prolong an NBA career, but the clock is ticking. His time as a King is coming to a dead end.

If not traded before the end of this season, which team will give Jimmer his next shot? For him to succeed at this level, here are five potential NBA teams where he may find success.

Hit page 2 for a breakdown of where Jimmer can go to get his swag back…

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  • Mark Jackman

    Sounds like this story was written last year. Jimmer is playing very well this season in limited minutes and should pull in a lot of interest from several teams during free agency this summer.

    For anyone that has seen him play this year it is noticeable that he has also worked on his defense and is no longer the weak link.

    on the season so far:
    49% 3 point shooter
    45% FG shooter

    There will always be demand for an efficient scorer like Jimmer.

  • Tony Punches

    This story obviously wasn’t written last year considering the talk of McLemore

  • Evan Eagan

    He’s had a couple good games recently but his defense and ball handling are still very suspect.

  • Mark Jackman

    Agreed on the ball handling…but how many PG do you know that aren’t bad on defense? can you name 5?

    Also, if he had just a couple good games…why are his SEASON field goal and 3 point percentages so high?

    not saying he deserves to start or anything…just think that some people don’t give him credit for the progress that he has made.

  • Mark Jackman

    I was talking more about the fact that he says “Obviously his game doesn’t seem to be translating with the big boys.”

    yet he has a better 3 point % than Kyle Korver who is owning the league with all those 3’s.

    Not saying he is better than Korver, just saying there is definitely room for him in the league.

    Obviously McLemore wasn’t on the team last year.

  • Evan Eagan

    Rajon Rondo, Mike Conley, Chris Paul, Tony Parker and Russell Westbrook.

    I agree that overall he has progressed on the offensive end, but hasn’t progressed enough on D and ball handling to warrant more than 5-10 minutes a game.

    Let’s be honest, fans who like Jimmer want to see him on the court for 30+ minutes. He’s just not that guy.

  • Seldon Gifford

    Has the author even watched Jimmer play? Yes, Jimmer needed to work on his defense, like many smaller guards. But his offense has always been at the “big boys” level. He just needs a coach that appreciates what he can do.

  • sota

    Dumb article. ..This guy has never watched him play…. if he took 5 minutes just to watch you tube of all his minutes. .. you would see jimmer clearly has the tools necessary.

  • natedog1

    No, we’d like to see him get 15-20 min. per game. He has been jerked around in Sac town. I remember one game last year where he scored, I think, 23 pts. and the next game he didn’t play. Those are the kind of coaching moves he has been given. No doubt, his defense is bad, but one of the worst 3 pt. shooting teams in the league will barely give him 5 min. a game. Terrible.

  • Nick Tenney

    EXACTLY! I don’t get how people don’t see that he hasn’t been given much of a chance in SacTown and how ridiculous the coaching is when it comes to him. He has been quite efficient in the extremely limited minutes he gets and I don’t get how he can’t at least get 15 minutes a game when he outplays a number of guys that get minutes instead of him. It’s a joke. And I remember that game where he came in and almost brought the team back to win it and then he doesn’t even see the court the next game! I wish the Kings would have been sent to Seattle so they could have shaken up the lineup more and maybe let him go to a team that could use a shooter off the bench.