One of the most controversial NBA prospects this year is BYU's Jimmer Fredette. Earlier this week, Jimmer was in town with five others as part of their pre-draft workouts.
Jimmer Fredette was a scoring sensation last year at BYU. Now he is focusing on his defense, which he was showing to the Indiana Pacers organization earlier this week. The pre-draft workout in Indianapolis featuring Fredette also included Tobias Harris, Vernon Macklin, Marcus Morris, Nolan Smith and Jeremy Tyler.
Other notable players that have been in this week include Kyle Singler, JuJuan Johnson, Jordan Hamilton, Gilbert Brown, Jimmy Butler, Jon Diebler, Tyler Honeycutt, Josh Selby and Corey Fisher.
With the NBA draft now less than three weeks away, teams are trying to see exactly what they could be getting with these players. While everyone knows Jimmer was a lethal offensive weapon last year in college, his defense remains suspect. In a league right now that requires the best teams to have great defenses, he could find himself slipping through the draft.
If the Pacers decided to use one of their picks on Fredette, it would be interesting to see how he fits in. If he were to play at the point, the team already has Darren Collison and Lance Stephenson under contract for next year. They would like to get AJ Price signed to another contract as well.
There is already a logjam at the SG position, but his offense would get him on the floor. The problem is he would have to guard the quickest players on the floor, something he has yet to show he can do.
The next level is going to be extremely tough, no matter where he plays. Even though he averaged 29 points per game last year, there are guys in the league that will be able to shut him down. When that happens, what do you do with him?
I still believe this team is far from becoming the team that we will see when the season begins in October. In the past, the organization has been hesitant to make any moves, but now that they find themselves in such a great position, it finally appears as though they are ready to shake things up. With all of the expired contracts and cap space, they have flexibility that not many other teams in the league have.
All five positions have room for improvement, but I think the PF and SG positions are the ones that should be addressed first. There will be a lot of new faces wearing the blue and gold after this summer is over.
They also need to get a reliable backup center, which is something Larry Bird elaborated on earlier this week. He said that he wants to have the best bench in the league. While I doubt they will be able to do that, he seems set on getting quality talent from the top of the roster, all the way down.
Indiana will have the 15th and 42nd picks in this year's draft.
While the Pacers landed a solid player last year in Paul George, they had their troubles with second-round pick Lance Stephenson. He almost never saw the court, largely in part to his off-the-court problems. This team can't afford to make a mistake like that again.
While Jimmer would be a great asset to have on offense and a quality guy in the community, we just don't know how he is going to pan out in this league. Some people say he could be the next Ben Gordon, Mark Price or Eddie House, while others think he could be the next Adam Morrison.
While there will be some speculation after the workouts are completed and the teams evaluate him, I just don't see the Pacers taking a chance on Jimmer. In my opinion, they will likely go with a defensive helper and probably someone that is a safer bet to be a good player in this league.
Personally, I think they should look at guys like Tristan Thompson, Nolan Smith, Vernon Macklin or even Klay Thompson.
The NBA draft is June 23rd.
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