Jimmer Fredette: 5 Ways He Can Mesh with Tyreke Evans, Sacramento Kings
There are many ways that Jimmer Fredette could help the Sacramento Kings in 2011-12.
He could take to the rafters of Power Balance Pavilion to exact vigilante justice on visiting opponents like a Mormon Bruce Wayne.
He could get an outlandish fade haircut and become the "kid" to Tyreke Evans' "play."
He could enchant rival superstars with his dreamy gaze, lulling them into a hypnotic trance of basketball ineffectiveness.
He could even fly backwards around the earth Superman-style, reversing everything about this planet that we have ever known, which would certainly create a reality in which the Kings are not only once again relevant, but even competitive.
Realistically, some of these things may not happen.
But Jimmer could also simply show up in Sacramento a more evolved basketball player.
Nearly all projections for the 2011-12 Sacramento Kings seem to be founded upon the belief that Jimmer will show up in training camp the same player he was in college—a relentless scorer with little else on his mind besides buckets, the Lord, and more buckets.
If Fredette can adapt his game to fit in with his new backcourt mate, things could be looking up sooner rather than later in Sacramento.
Here are five slightly more realistic changes he can make this dream a reality.
1. Cut Down on Bad Shots
Jimmer could afford to take bad shots at BYU because his team had few other options, and let’s be honest—who on the BYU campus would have the stones to tell Jimmer Freaking Fredette not to shoot the ball?
But to fit in effectively with Tyreke, it would behoove Jimmer to eliminate the step-back threes, transition bombs and long-distance floaters from his repertoire. Actually, it would behoove any NBA player to cut these shenanigans out of their bag of tricks, but especially a rookie point-guard-in-training playing alongside a ball-dominating combo guard.
Cutting back on bad shots will go a long way towards earning Tyreke's trust, which help ease Jimmer's transition to the NBA.
2. Do What He Does Best
...Knock down open jumpers from anywhere and everywhere in the greater Sacramento area.
Part of the reason Tyreke has been so frustratingly ineffective at the point guard position in his career is that he hasn’t exactly had a murderer’s row of three-point specialists or jump shooters surrounding him, waiting for him to drive and kick for automatic points.
Jimmer has the range and consistency on his long-range jumper that Omri Casspi, Donte Greene, Francisco Garcia, Beno Udrih and John Salmons lack. He can be that consistent option that might give Evans the confidence to pass the ball.
And if Tyreke starts passing the ball, good things will happen. Or at least we can hope that not-good things will stop happening.
3. Change the Culture in Sacramento
Currently, the Kings' roster is known as much for laziness and unreached potential as anything else.
Jimmer could be the beginning of the end of this rep for the Kings.
If Fredette comes in, works his tail off, and manages to bring a winning attitude with him, it would go a long way towards earning the respect of his coaches and teammates.
It is said that one bad apple can ruin a bunch. And the Kings potentially have more than one bad apple on their roster. But it is also true that a good attitude can be infectious.
If Jimmer can bring positivity, professionalism and a little bit of hope to Sacramento, his on-court production will be secondary (well, almost). It could also do wonders for the development of his young franchise.
4. Be a Vocal Leader
Ideally, Tyreke himself would step up and take verbal control of the Kings.
However with every passing year, it is becoming more and more obvious that he simply isn’t this type of player. He doesn’t have the makeup for this role, and it is unlikely that he will develop it anytime soon.
And honestly, based on Tyreke’s less-than-stellar track record with teammates and not getting involved in drive-by shootings (allegedly), maybe it’s better that he isn’t the vocal type.
However the lack of a vocal floor leader in Sacramento has undoubtedly hurt the Kings in recent years. If Jimmer can emerge as this leader, it will allow Tyreke to take on a role that is more suited to his personality, which will surely benefit the entire team.
5. Don't Shoot a Basketball Until Training Camp Starts
Obviously this is a bit of an exaggeration, but the fact remains: Fredette would do well to focus the vast majority of his work on improving his passing game.
Fredette is a shooter first and foremost. His shot will come, even if he cuts down on practicing it. What the Kings—and Evans—especially need is a distributor.
During the most productive stretches of his career, Evans played with the ball in his hands. In order to take the next step as a franchise, the Kings need to find a way to bridge the gap between Evans dominating the ball and legitimate team play.
If Fredette improves his passing, he could be the man to make that bridge and take the Kings to the next level—the next level being a Clippers-type non-playoff squad with interesting potential.
Welcome to the world of the Sacramento Kings, where becoming the Los Angeles Clippers represents a significant step forward!
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