2011 NBA Draft

NBA Draft 2011: What the Experts Are Saying About Jimmer Fredette

Michael FoglianoAnalyst IJune 20, 2011

NBA Draft 2011: What the Experts Are Saying About Jimmer Fredette

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    HOUSTON - APRIL 03:  Jimmer Fredette of BYU received the 2011 Naismith Trophy Presented by AT&T at the NABC Guardians of the Game Awards Program on April 3, 2011 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
    Bob Levey/Getty Images

    The NBA draft is on its way, and a lot of questions have arisen around the name Jimmer Fredette.

    Jimmer is probably the most popular name in this draft despite not being a projected top pick. The sensational BYU sharpshooter does have his critics, and that's what we are here for today.

    Throughout all of the media, there is a crowd that supports Fredette and a crowd that already puts the bust label on him.

    Let's see what these experts have to say...

Against: Colin Cowherd

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    Colin Cowherd of ESPN Radio hosts The Herd from the Super Bowl XL Media Center at the Renaissance Center in Detroit, Michigan on January 30, 2006.  (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
    A. Messerschmidt/Getty Images

    Yes, we'll start off with the bad side of Jimmer with the infamous Colin Cowherd. 

    Cowherd is not a fan of Fredette, and he usually has a "glass is half empty" mindset.

    The following statements were all said by Cowherd after BYU was kicked out of the NCAA tournament by Florida:

    "No reasonable person can watch Jimmer and Kemba [Walker] and tell me Jimmer's in the same league. Laughable."

    "If Allen Iverson gave you that night, you'd call him a ball hog. Jimmer gives you that night, and you somehow find a way to call it magical."

    "That guy, trust me, is coming to an NBA bench near you."

    Well, there you have it. These are typical Cowherd remarks that I find humorous, but don't necessarily agree with all of them.

Against: Rick Reilly

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    LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 07:  Sportswriter Rick Reilly appears onstage at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center's 24th Annual Sports Spectacular at the Century Plaza Hotel on June 7, 2009 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
    Kevin Winter/Getty Images

    Rick Reilly has won National Sportswriter of the Year numerous times, and in this argument he is not in favor of Jimmer.

    In fact, he wrote an entire article after BYU's loss to Florida in the tournament and called it "Jimmer grows dimmer":

    "Yes, he scored 32 points, but he took 29 shots to do it. ... If his last college game is what he's bringing to the NBA, then I'd say, in five years, he's got a really good chance to be your Provo area Isuzu dealer."

    That's saying something. In his article Reilly also rejects every positive comparison made with Fredette.

    Reilly is a clear devil's advocate in the Jimmer argument and sees no future star power in him.

For: Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook

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    DALLAS, TX - MAY 25:  Kevin Durant #35 and Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder stand next to each other on the court in the fourth quarter while taking on the Dallas Mavericks in Game Five of the Western Conference Finals during the 2011 NBA
    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook are two big fans of Jimmer. 

    Durant tweeted that Jimmer "the best scorer in the world," while Westbrook was quoted as saying during All-Star Weekend, "I know from just watching him he is going to be a great NBA player."

    Coming from the back-to-back scoring champion, calling Jimmer "the best scorer in the world" is a big statement.

    Westbrook also seems very confident in Fredette.

    Although Durant called Fredette the best scorer, I don't think he will be any threat to Durant's scoring title, and I don't believe he will be as good of a point guard as Westbrook.

For: Jay Bilas

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    Jay Bilas is a well-known college basketball analyst, and he is in favor of Fredette. You can read his entire viewpoint of Fredette here, which was published in The Salt Lake Tribune.

    Now, Bilas doesn't necessarily believe he is going to be a superstar, but he thinks he will be a good player and a useful tool for a team.

    The only cons he points out are that Fredette is not a point guard and is not a good defender.

    Bilas says the good things about Jimmer are he can score off the bench or even as a starter, he can "change the tone of the game" and he provides his own role with a great mentality.

    He focuses on how Jimmer played against the USA national team and never backed down and played at a "high level." He thinks his mentality is what really stands out and that it will translate in the league.

    I think Bilas' point of view is the best one I've seen.

Jimmer Fredette: Speaking on Himself

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    NEW ORLEANS, LA - MARCH 24:  Jimmer Fredette #32 of the Brigham Young Cougars warms up prior to their game against the Florida Gators in the Southeast regional of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at New Orleans Arena on March 24, 2011 in New Orle
    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    In the new issue of Sports Illustrated, Jimmer was interviewed by writer Chris Mannix.

    Mannix asked Jimmer how he plays and who he compares himself to, and that's when Jimmer replied, "Deron Williams and Steve Nash."

    He went on to say, "I'm not saying I'm as good. But I'm similar in size to Deron and I can play up-tempo, use ball screens well, shoot from outside, use my crossover, get to the basket and finish strong."

    When comparing his game to Nash, Jimmer says, "I can get into the lane and finish over guys with awkward angles."

    Later in the interview, Fredette talked about how he won't be afraid of the big moment and he will "expect to play great" and "it's not the end of the world if you don't."

    I think Jimmer has a great attitude toward becoming an NBA player, and although I think the comparisons are a stretch, physically he and Williams are similar.

Comparison

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    NEW ORLEANS, LA - MARCH 24:  Jimmer Fredette #32 of the Brigham Young Cougars shoots against the Florida Gators during the Southeast regional of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at New Orleans Arena on March 24, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (
    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    This is really hard to do. 

    A plethora of names have popped around Jimmer—Mark Price, Deron Williams, Stephen Curry, Steve Nash, Kyle Korver, Eddie House and so on.

    In all of those players, you can pick out something similar, but I think we truly will not know until he steps foot on the court.

    The NBA draft is this Thursday night, and hopefully a lockout won't keep us waiting longer to see what Jimmer can do.

    It can definitely be said he needs to learn how to play better defense, and he probably won't be able to get the number of shots off in the NBA that he did at BYU.

    However, Fredette has the ability and potential to be a great tool for a team by providing his own role.


    For more 2011 NBA draft coverage, stay tuned to Bleacher Report for updated NBA mock drafts, NBA draft rumors, NBA draft results and draft grades.

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