When Jimmer Fredette negotiated a buyout with the Sacramento Kings and chose to sign with the Chicago Bulls it was a smart move by both parties. Fredette got a fresh start and the Bulls got something in return that they desperately needed – scoring.
The Bulls are the worst scoring team in the entire NBA averaging just 93.1 points per contest. Fredette’s ability to shoot the ball could knock the dust off of Chicago’s offense right when scoring the ball matters the most – in the playoffs.
Fredette led the nation in scoring during his senior season at Brigham Young University averaging 28.9 points per game. The high octane offense that Fredette displayed in college has yet to translate to the professional level.
Drafted tenth overall in the 2011 NBA Draft, Fredette was caught up in a numbers game as a member of the Kings. With a revolving door of guards like Tyreke Evans, Ben McLemore, and Aaron Brooks to contend with, Fredette was left on the outside looking in. The BYU grad was even passed up in the rotation by the 5 foot 9 inch Isaiah Thomas, who was selected fifty picks after Fredette in the 2011 draft.
Since joining the Bulls on March 2 Fredette has only seen six minutes of action. Jimmer is once again dealing with an already established backcourt in Chicago, but this is a different situation from Sacramento. The Bulls need Fredette as much Fredette needs the Bulls. In the playoffs it’s a lot harder to score than in the regular season and when it matters Fredette’s number is sure to be called.
SS: What led to your decision to come to Chicago?
Jimmer Fredette: I think I fit in well here. These guys play hard every night. I came here hopefully to be able to spread the floor and shoot the ball and help with some outside shooting so I thought it was a good fit.
SS: How’d it feel that first night when the crowd erupted after you made your first jumper?
Jimmer Fredette: It felt great. These are great fans here. They love the Bulls. I’m really, really happy to be a part of this organization. I appreciated the welcome.
SS: How have your teammates embraced you?
Jimmer Fredette: Very well. All of the guys have been great and welcoming. I’ve been able to fit right in so it’s been great. They’ve done a great job with that and hopefully I’ll continue to grow with them.
SS: Did you ever feel like you fit in with the Kings?
Jimmer Fredette: Sometimes situations just don’t work out. You have to continue to move forward. I progressed as a player and got better. My numbers and my efficiency was good. I played well but sometimes it’s just about the right fit. I’m excited to be on a new team.
SS: What’s it been like playing for Coach Thibodeau?
Jimmer Fredette: It’s been great. He’s very detailed. He’s a fiery guy and into every single game. You know what you’re going to get from him. He’s intense and that’s the way this team plays. They definitely embody his work ethic and mindset so it’s been great.
SS: What’s been the toughest thing to pick up in practice so far?
Jimmer Fredette: Just the terms. The lingo and terminology is the toughest thing. Once you know that, you’re able to jump right in and be able to feel comfortable playing because these guys play together as a team, but you just have to know the coverage’s.
SS: For those that haven’t seen you play, what’s the best part of your game?
Jimmer Fredette: Probably the shot [laughs]. My shooting.
SS: What do you need to work on to improve your game?
Jimmer Fredette: I need to continue to work on defensively being able to get into guys and force them the way that they’re supposed to go. I’ll continue to work on that. It’s more of a mindset thing.
SS: What are your goals for the end of the season?
Jimmer Fredette: Our goal is to be able to make it to the playoffs and make a great run. That’s what we wanna do. We believe in our team that we have here and hopefully I can be a part of that.