Jimmer Fredette

AP Photo/Michael Wyke

Report: Suns signing Jimmer Fredette to two-year contract

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The Suns didn’t meet with Jimmer Fredette just for fun.

Arizona Sports 98.7 FM:

The Phoenix Suns are signing Jimmer Fredette through the rest of the season with a team option for 2019-20, per 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s John Gambadoro.

Fredette is a relatively high-profile signing because he scored a lot of points at BYU eight years ago and fills a great-white-hope narrative to some.

He’s also a 30-year-old who hasn’t played in the NBA in three years and faced questions about his athleticism even when younger. Don’t count on much.

Fredette’s season just ended in China, where he was dominating. But his high-usage style doesn’t translate cleanly to the NBA.

Fredette won’t change the course of the Suns’ season. They are and will remain one of the NBA’s worst teams. Though they need a point guard, especially with Tyler Johnson injured, Fredette hasn’t shown the playmaking ability to handle that position regularly.

At best, Fredette entertains late in a lost season and gives himself a chance to earn a role next season. The team option gives Phoenix upside if Fredette pans out at no additional cost if he doesn’t.

At worst, he interferes with the development of younger Suns over their final 10 games. That seems more likely.

Stephon Marbury wants to return, play one more NBA season at age 40

Associated Press
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Stephon Marbury hasn’t played an NBA game since the end of the 2009 NBA season — the season Derrick Rose was Rookie of the Year.

Starting in 2010, he went to China and went on to become a pioneer for other American hoopsters heading to that country — and he became a legend in Beijing. He led the Beijing Ducks to two Chinese Basketball Association titles and had such an impact he has a statue in his honor and a musical about him and his impact on Chinese culture.

Now, at age 40 and with his career in China winding down, he wants one more shot in the NBA, and he posted about it on Instagram.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BY8s7WDFzFI/?taken-by=starburymarbury

Marbury is committed to play for the Beijing Fly Dragons during the upcoming Chinese season, but that will end if February or March (depending on their playoff run) and after that he hopes to hook up with an NBA team.

It would be a fun story, but I don’t see how it happens. Last season in China Marbury averaged 21.4 points and 5.5 assists per game, shooting 34.1 percent from three. Those numbers sound impressive until you consider that the Chinese league is known for an appalling lack of defense — I don’t mean major college bad, more like DIII bad (and that’s not fair to the DIII guys, who at least try). Maybe a better description is disinterested AAU team bad. Let me put it this way, last season the top three scorers in China were Jimmer Fredette at 37.6 points per game, Errick McCollum at 37.5, and MarShon Brooks 36.2 — and none of them got NBA contracts.

Marbury was struggling to stay on the court and play at an NBA level eight years ago, it’s hard to imagine him doing it now.

I loved Marbury’s game and would love to see him play again, but this may be more of a Big3 situation than the NBA. That said, a team or two may give him a look.

Fredette returns to Knicks’ D-League affiliate

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NEW YORK (AP) Jimmer Fredette has rejoined Westchester of the NBA Development League following the expiration of his 10-day contract with the New York Knicks.

Fredette played for Westchester on Sunday in its 126-88 loss to Maine, finishing with 12 points.

The former college player of the year from BYU appeared in two games for the Knicks after being signed Feb. 22, making a 3-pointer on his only shot attempt and finishing with seven points. The Knicks elected not to offer him a second 10-day deal.

Fredette has spent most of the season at Westchester after being waived by San Antonio in training camp and a brief stint early in the season with New Orleans.

Porzingis, Knicks beat 76ers as Okafor sits with suspension

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NEW YORK (AP) — Kristaps Porzingis soared, Jahlil Okafor sat.

At this point, the New York Knicks must be pleased with the way things went in the NBA draft.

Porzingis had 17 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Knicks to a 99-87 victory Wednesday night over the Philadelphia 76ers, who played without the suspended rookie they took one pick ahead of Porzingis.

Porzingis had his ninth double-double of the season, tops among rookies and sixth in the NBA. His 6-of-10 performance included 2-for-2 shooting from 3-point range and a fourth-quarter dunk when he blew by Nerlens Noel on the perimeter.

Sixers coach Brett Brown, an Australian who coached internationally for years, said Porzingis’ combination of skills reminded him of players such as Dirk Nowitzki and Toni Kukoc.

“That’s a hell of a good pick and I think that his upside is going to be kind of whatever he wants it to be,” Brown said.

Knicks coach Derek Fisher sees the same unlimited potential.

“I think it’s a blank canvas and he can be as great as he wants to be,” Fisher said.

The 76ers selected Okafor third, and Porzingis went next to New York. Based on the Latvian’s impressive play on the court and Okafor’s troubles off it, the Knicks must have no regrets.

A night after winning for the first time this season, the 76ers suspended their leading scorer after the release of a second video provided details of his fight in Boston he hadn’t revealed to them.

Philadelphia attempted 30 3-pointers and made just nine, turning more toward a perimeter game without the 17.2 points per game Okafor provides.

“I could definitely tell they were missing somebody and that was him,” Porzingis said.

Brown had spoken to Okafor after the release of the first video on TMZ showed him fighting in Boston on the night of a loss to the Celtics last month. Brown said he was surprised by what he saw in the new one.

“As far as the play-by-play of what happened, he did not go into that,” Brown said. “Today we learned more and the thing I do say is when I spent time with Jahlil in his room today, he is ashamed, he’s embarrassed and this has caught him off guard.”

Hollis Thompson scored 13 points for the 76ers, who ended their record-tying 0-18 start and their 28-game skid dating to last season that was the longest in major U.S. professional sports with a 103-91 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday.

Arron Afflalo added 13 points for the Knicks, who snapped a four-game losing streak. Carmelo Anthony, back after missing a game with an illness, scored 12 points and shot 5 for 16.

The Knicks never trailed and put six players in double figures.

TIP-INS

76ers: Okafor will also miss a game Saturday against Denver and be eligible to return Monday at home against San Antonio. … The 76ers have lost four straight at Madison Square Garden.

Knicks: The club’s NBA D-League team dropped a Wednesday matinee for its first loss this season. Former college player of the year Jimmer Fredette had 22 points and nine assists after a 37-point debut Monday, while Knicks forward Cleanthony Early had 16 points and nine rebounds. Early was recalled later Wednesday and got in for the final 3 minutes against the 76ers, joining Troy Daniels, Jordan Farmar, Coby Karl and Luke Harangody as the only players to accomplish a D-League/NBA doubleheader.

Jimmer Fredette scores 37 in D-League debut while Floyd Mayweather watches

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You can’t make this stuff up.

After being cut by the Spurs during training camp, Jimmer Fredette decided to stay stateside and play in the D-League, looking for a way back into and another chance in the NBA (the banged up Pelicans picked him up for four games but released him again). Fredette put up impressive numbers in his debut with the Westchester Knicks (the New York Knicks affiliate), scoring 37 points on 12-of-17 shooting, hitting a couple of threes and getting to the line a dozen times.

All while boxer Floyd Mayweather looked on from courtside (Mayweather was there to see buddy Jordan Crawford).

If Fredette keeps putting up numbers, maybe he gets a call up. But nothing is seriously going to change for Fredette unless his defense improves markedly — that has always been the big problem, and not always one exploited the same way in the D-League. He is on the low end of the athleticism scale for the NBA (not college) and that has led teams to just target him when he comes in games. There is no mercy in the NBA, and Fredette has been the gazelle outside the herd that becomes the clear target.

But he’s had a good D-League game, it’s a start on a road back.