With the second overall pick in the 2015 NBA D-League Draft, the Westchester Knicks selected Jimmer Fredette. This came on the heels of a report that the New York Knicks had interest in signing Fredette to the main roster.
It may not be much longer before that comes to fruition.
Fredette has struggled to find his place in the NBA, but he’s still a hot commodity as far as the tail end of a rotation goes. He’s respected as a hard worker who brings positive energy to a locker room.
According to Ian Begley of ESPN New York, the plan and expectation is that Fredette will work his way up to the main roster.
"“We talked to them beforehand and we hoped to make it work so I’d be drafted by the Knicks,” Fredette said. “We had phone calls from other organizations. We’re very excited the Knicks were interested.“I’m from upstate. It’s kind of coming back home. It’s not exactly where I’m from, but it’s definitely exciting to be back in New York. I loved watching the Knicks growing up. To be part of the organization in Westchester is a great opportunity for me to go out and play and hopefully be able to do good things and help the organization.’’"
This all points in the direction of Fredette soon joining the Knicks’ main group.
Fredette was a college basketball superstar, sweeping the National Player of the Year awards in 2011. He went on to be selected at No. 10 overall in the 2011 NBA Draft, but has since been unable to hold on to a roster spot.
Fredette hopes to do enough in Westchester to make the move to Manhattan.
"“With them having 14 guys on the roster, you never know what’s going to happen. But everything comes into play when you’re trying to figure out the best situation to go to. I’m excited to be here,” he said. “I’m not too far from where I grew up so that’s a big part of it and I think that’s sort of a cool thing. You never know what’s going to happen, but I hope to impress and play well and then go from there.”"
Fredette could be the latest feel good story to capture New York’s heart.
As previously alluded to, the Knicks have an available roster spot. There is a surplus of point guard depth with Jose Calderon, Langston Galloway and Jerian Grant, but the former has been involved in trade rumors.
If Calderon is traded at some point in 2015-16, Fredette could fill his role in the rotation.
This isn’t to suggest that New York would trade Calderon strictly for the purpose of getting Fredette minutes. Calderon’s contract could interfere in the team signing a player to a max deal, however, and that is a storyline to watch.
Going in Fredette’s favor is the fact that this wouldn’t be the first New York has found depth at point guard through the D-League.
New York brought Langston Galloway up from their Westchester affiliate in 2014-15. Not only did he make the All-Rookie Second Team, but he’s playing a major role for the Knicks in 2015-16.
Galloway’s current average of 26.8 minutes played per game is expected to be maintained or improved upon throughout the season.
Most notably, the Knicks found folk hero Jeremy Lin through the NBA D-League. Fredette may be Linsanity 2.0, but his sharpshooting could bring Madison Square Garden to life in a way that’s somewhere in between Lin and Steve Novak in 2012-13.
It’s not guaranteed that Fredette will receive New York’s final roster spot, but he has a great chance to do so if he thrives with the Westchester Knicks.