It might have seemed like it took a lifetime for former BYU star Jimmer Fredette to get playing time in the Windy City. But on Wednesday, April 14 Jimmer finally got some quality minutes -- playing in place of injured D.J. Augustin.
Jimmer made every minute count, playing an Ironman-like 31 on Wednesday in a 108-95 win over Orlando. But where he really shined, where the Bulls should take note, is that he did a little bit of everything.
He even committed five fouls in those 31 minutes, showing he could play defense -- and shot 50 percent from the field, going 7-for-14 for his new team. And even if he did only shoot 1-for-5 from behind the three-point arc -- the primary reason the Bulls wanted him in the first place -- you have to like his production on a night when Chicago needed it.
Jimmer scored 17 points for the Bulls Wednesday, by far his best night for Chicago. He had three rebounds, two assists and after not playing one minute the entire week, he delivered. Bulls teammate Joakim Noah certainly thought so, giving Jimmer a ringing endorsement not only for his big night numbers-wise, but most important by hanging in there when he was on the bench for long stretches.
“I think it just shows a lot about Jimmer’s character. Not being able to play for such a long period and coming in when his number’s called, and performing the way he performed, it just shows you how hard he works every day in practice,“ Noah said in the post-game press conference. “For him to come in and deliver like that without having played in such a long time, it just shows what kind of worker and what a real professional guy he is. Jimmer is a really good player.”
In true Jimmer style, the BYU great downplayed his contribution to the Bulls on Wednesday with his aw-shucks, golly-gee personality. In a world of spoiled, surly brats, Jimmer is the complete opposite and it’s refreshing to see.
“It’s something I’ve done a lot in my career so far, so you’ve just got to continue to be prepared and be professional, and like I said before, you never know when an opportunity’s going to come,“ Jimmer said in the post-game press conference. “So you’ve got to be able to take advantage of it when you get minutes and hopefully I was able to do that tonight.”
That Jimmer was, and more. His big game proves everyone was wrong about the former BYU star. The rumors about him being washed up and a has-been were just hearsay.
Before Wednesday, Jimmer had played just 25 minutes total in a Bulls uniform. He doubled that, and then some, with this game. But now comes the playoffs -- the real reason Chicago acquired this dynamic scorer in the first place.