Analysts and fans of the game predicted Jimmer Fredette would have a rough transition playing in the NBA, and those critics were right.
The scouting report on Jimmer remains the same: great shooter but can’t create in open space. Teams hounded the guard as he struggled to adjust. Many said Fredette would probably never ever be able to get minutes, which was somewhat true. Some took it further, forecasting that Jimmer would be out of the league in a couple of years.
The latter is extreme but there are issues, which is why the team that drafted him are listening to offers.
Make no mistake — the Sacramento Kings would love to unload Jimmer. But there’s new ownership. Owner Vivek Ranadive and General Manager Pete D’Alessandro won’t go for the salary dump transactions that the Kings had grown accustomed to. The Kings maintain they aren’t actively shopping Fredette and I believe that, but there’s nowhere for him to get good minutes.
At the two, Thornton and McLemore will see the bulk of minutes and as a point, Jimmer is a distant third on the depth chart behind Greivis Vazquez, the incumbent Isaiah Thomas and rookie Ray McCallum, who impressed at Summer League.
I like the guy a lot. I really thought Jimmer could contribute. Most of that had to do with the coaching style of former head coach Keith Smart, who favored a rotation that changed practically every night. This year, Jimmer took steps forward, shooting 42 percent last year, which was a slight bump over his rookie season.
Jimmer also got going from deep, shooting 41 percent — but those shots were contested or came off the pick-and-roll.
Through it all, it’s the range from three that makes Fredette an attractive piece for a team that can actually effectively manage his future.
I would hate to see the guy go; he’s a class act that never gets in trouble. He’s never on the wrong side of a headline, unlike some other Kings players. But at this point, with the pieces the team has, there’s no room for Fredette to grow. A trade definitely makes sense, but at what cost? Most teams will look to the deadline to make moves but if the Kings find something they like, it’s a done deal.
Then everybody will be happy — no matter which side of the fence you’re on.