There are reports about NBA teams showing interest in signing the former BYU guard once his season is over in China.
Jimmer Fredette’s first year in the Chinese Basketball Association has been nothing but spectacular. He was recently named the leagues international MVP while leading the Shanghai Sharks to a three-seed in the CBA playoffs with amazing stats. For the season, Fredette averaged 37.3 points on 48.1 percent shooting from the floor with 7.9 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 1.7 steals in 37 games.
His contract with the CBA will not allow him to leave the league before the season ends, but their league is completed well before the NBA’s. With Fredette in the playoffs that day could be sooner than later and NBA teams are looking to add depth to their roster for a playoff push.
Sources: China MVP, Jimmer Fredette, playing for Shanghai in playoffs, starting to engage NBA teams on March return. He's scored 37.5 PPG.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojVerticalNBA) March 1, 2017
Fredette is still just 28 and has spent time in the NBA from being lottery pick to playing a handful of games last year with the New York Knicks and New Orelans Pelicans but most of the spent 2015-16 season was played with the Westchester Knicks.
There are plenty of NBA teams that need a shooter like Fredette to come off the bench and create a spark, but in the CBA he was given the green light on offense and could basically do whatever he wanted.
While he is putting up obscene numbers he is not extremely efficient compared to others in the CBA, and Dan Feldman of Pro Basketball Talk is not sold on Fredette as perhaps being the best talent from the CBA who could make a jump to the NBA this spring.
“Errick McCollum is averaging more points per game in the Chinese Basketball Association and taking fewer shots than Fredette,” Feldman said. “Also averaging 30 points per game in China: MarShon Brooks, Jared Cunningham, Jabari Brown, Jamaal Franklin, Lester Hudson, Darius Adams and Dominique Jones.
“In other words, a bunch of borderline NBA players who most likely belong outside the top league. That includes Fredette, whose selfish style doesn’t lend itself to the smaller role he’d likely have to fill in the NBA. It takes only one team to take a chance on Fredette, but I wouldn’t bank on immediate help or upside from the 28-year-old.”
Also to consider is that Fredette led his team to the playoffs and was an MVP while most of these other American players were on bad teams while putting up good numbers. Of that group, Hudson and Adams did make the playoffs for their teams.
Part of the allure or charm of Fredette is his name and people outside of BYU fans know who he is and that would create a bit of buzz if he lands with an NBA team. One landing spot that has always been mentioned has been the Golden State Warriors as their offense is fast-pace, they spread the ball out and shoot a good amount of three-point shots. Coincidentally, the Warriors are in need of a scoring boost as Kevin Durant is out indefinitely with a grade-2 MCL sprain and bone bruise which he suffered Tuesday night when his teammate Zaza Pachulia fell on Durant’s left leg.
Another option could be for Fredette to return to a familiar team in the New Orleans Pelicans where he played 50 games in 2014-15 and four more the following year. New Orleans could use a shooter to free open floor space now that the Pelicans have acquired DeMarcus Cousins who joins a crowded front court with Anthony Davis. Fredette didn’t light up the world last time around with the Pelicans and his time with the Sacramento Kings and Cousins also was not an ideal scenario.
Fredette wants to come back to the NBA and there is a good chance he will at the very least get a 10-day contract with a team to show off his skills.