Jimmer: no longer bad in the NBA

jimmer fredette sacramento kingsAfter the full blown Jimmermania of his senior year at BYU, Jimmer Fredette's first season in the NBA with the Sacramento Kings was a let down. The Glens Falls folk hero fizzled. It wasn't pretty. And expectations weren't high for this season.

But so far this season: not bad!

A few signs that Jimmer's starting figure out things in the NBA...

+ Jimmer's scoring average isn't much higher than last season (8.2 vs. 7.6) -- but he's scoring those points in fewer minutes. In fact, his points/36 minutes is good for 20th in the NBA. [ESPN] [Basketball reference]

+ He's shooting a lot better. Known as a shooter in college, Jimmer's field goal percentage was under 40 percent last season -- and he shot just 36 percent from three. This year: 43 percent, and 44 percent from three.

+ That better shooting has pushed his player efficiency rating up more than 7 points this season to 17.65 -- which is a totally respectable number (good enough for "third banana" status). And it puts him in the company of other not bad players. (Luckily for Jimmer, defense isn't a big component of PER.) [ESPN] [ESPN]

+ Kings coach Keith Smart says Jimmer's made "a gigantic leap" this season. And there's been talk of Jimmer being in the running for most improved player. [Sacramento Bee] [SB Nation]

It's not like Jimmer's owning the NBA. But he's starting to show he could have a decent career. And with him fighting for playing time, calls have started to free Jimmer -- either via more minutes, or a trade. [Bleacher Report] [The Big Lead]

Also: we're just going to pretend that this shot didn't happen.

Earlier on AOA: 28.5 facts about Jimmer Fredette

photo: NBA.com

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