“With the tenth pick in the 2011 NBA draft, the Milwaukee Bucks select Jimmer Fredette, from Brigham Young University,” NBA Commissioner David Stern said on June 23, seven months ago.
At this moment, Jimmer Fredette was officially going to leave the state of Utah to pursue his dreams of playing professional basketball. Saturday is the first time that he will return to play with his new team, the Sacramento Kings.
Jimmer went from draft day success, with a two-year, $4.7 million contract in hand, to locked out of the team facilities due to a labor contract between the owners and the players union. Jimmer stayed active, participating in charity games and working out with former teammates at BYU.
Once the season began, Jimmer had to learn the offense in a short amount of time. Although the trade moved Kings point guard Beno Udrih, Jimmer has been coming off the bench to replace Evans, and running the second unit.
The Kings’ season has been tumultuous, with head coach Paul Westphal fired Jan. 6 and replaced by assistant Keith Smart. Jimmer also started the season slowly, averaging eight points in 22.8 minutes in the team’s first five games.
An injury to Marcus Thornton has given Jimmer more playing time in the last three games, with a season-high 20-point, six-assist outing against Memphis in a losing effort.
The game is at 7 pm in EnergySolutions Arena on Saturday. The game will be broadcast on Root Sports or on NBA TV.