After two years of solid outside shooting with little playing time to speak of, Jimmer Fredette might want to force his way off the rebuilding Sacramento Kings.
The 24-year-old has spent his first two NBA seasons riding the Kings bench, and his shooting touch and offensive repertoire could be used far more on a team like the Utah Jazz. There are several reasons why a Fredette trade would benefit every party, especially Sacramento.
The Kings, while viewing the former college basketball player of the year as a valuable commodity, are overloaded at both guard positions. After trading Tyreke Evans to New Orleans earlier this month, Sacramento now has six guards on the roster, including recent draft picks Ben McLemore and Ray McCallum.
McLemore was viewed as a potential top overall selection, and reports suggest the Kings were thrilled that he fell to them at the seventh pick. That spells even less playing time than the 16 minutes Fredette’s averaged in two seasons.
Shipping Fredette off to Utah, or any other team, could bring in a young big man or even a late round draft pick from a contending team to the Kings. Sacramento apparently toyed with idea of trading Fredette in order to free up cap space to sign guard Monta Ellis earlier this month.
Fredette should welcome a complete change of scenery even if he doesn’t return to his BYU roots. He has career averages of 7.4 points and 1.5 assists, to go along with 38 percent shooting from three-point range on a pittance of minutes, and if given more time he could be a solid third option for a contending or rising club.
After losing veteran guards Randy Foye and Mo Williams to free agency, the Jazz are in need of shooters. Foye and Williams were the second and third best marksman from the beyond the arc last season.
Utah did pick talented combo guard Trey Burke out of Michigan, but he may need time to adjust to the speed of the NBA like every other rookie. The Jazz could also pick up Fredette in order to generate some competition for guard Gordon Hayward, who many have believe is due for a breakout year.
Then there’s the obvious reason Fredette should head back: his Mormon faith. He could represent a marketing bonanza for the Jazz to the many Mormon communities around Utah. It was at BYU in Provo where Fredette burst onto the scene and led the Cougars to a Sweet Sixteen appearance in 2011.