Shooting is an art form and no one in BYU history painted the canvas more emphatically than Jimmer Fredette. The 2011 College Basketball National Player of the Year displayed a range unprecedented in Provo and a shooter’s touch that has taken him all over the world.

Fredette will represent the United States next month in Paris when 3x3 basketball makes its Olympic debut. There is no shortage of spectacular shooters on the planet and during a recent “Y’s Guys” podcast, Fredette revealed his top five of all time — not named Jimmer.

After exporting his game to China, Jimmer Fredette is now a man in demand on two hemispheres

Here they are.

No. 5 Mark Price

The long-time Cleveland Cavalier guard played 12 seasons in the NBA and scored 10,989 points in 722 games. Price shot .472 from the field, .402 from the 3-point line and .904 from the free-throw line.

“People forget about Mark,” Fredette said. “He was an absolute shooter, a 50-40-90 guy. He was an incredible shooter.”

No. 4 Reggie Miller

Miller played all his 18 NBA seasons with Indiana. He scored 25,279 points in 1,389 games. Miller shot .471 from the field, .396 from 3 and .888 from the free-throw line.

“The guy could shoot from any angle and that’s one thing that is really difficult, being able to shoot on the move like he used to do from any angle at any time with the defense that was playing him,” Fredette said. “He was an amazing shooter.”

No. 3 Larry Bird

Bird played 13 seasons in Boston and finished his career with 21,791 points in 897 games. Bird shot .496 from the field, .376 from 3 and .886 from the free-throw line.

“You can’t leave Larry Legend off a shooter’s list,” Fredette said. “Bird could shoot anywhere, and nobody could block his shot because he shot it behind his head with an unorthodox form. He was the (Nikola) Jokic before Jokic.”

No. 2 Klay Thompson

Thompson just finished his 11th season with Golden State. So far, he has amassed 15,532 points in 793 games. He is shooting .453 from the field, .413 from 3 and .927 from the free-throw line.

“Everyone is terrified of Klay when he gets on the floor,” Fredette said. “They are saying, ‘You can’t let him shoot a shot because if he sees one go in, the next seven could go in.’ He is like that. He is feared on the floor with his shooting ability.”

No. 1 Steph Curry

No NBA player made more money than Curry last season ($51,915,615) and he is expected to remain the highest paid next season ($55,761,207). His shot is his money-maker. In 15 seasons with Golden State, Curry has scored 23,668 points in 956 games.

The 6-foot-3 guard is shooting a sizzling .473 from the field, .426 from 3 and .910 from the free-throw line.

“Steph is a completely different animal from anyone else. His release is so quick, and he can shoot it from his hip,” said Fredette. “It is super interesting and a beautiful shot, but the fact that he can get it off at anytime from anywhere and at any angle just makes him impossible to guard as you can see throughout his NBA career.”

Jimmer Fredette will represent Utah at the Olympics in more ways than one

Basketball used to be highlighted by the big fellas throwing down slam dunks. Fredette sees Curry’s influence as a game-changer in more ways than one.

“What Steph has done is every little kid out there wants to shoot deep 3s. You are going to see a generation coming up where everyone is spacing the floor differently than they used to,” he said. “So, you must have guys who are interchangeable, and you must have guys who can space the floor and shoot and a lot of that is because of Steph.”

Jimmer vs. top five


While Fredette holds well-deserved respect for those among his top five, he believes he could hold his own in a shooting contest and the numbers back him up. During his six seasons overseas, Fredette scored 6,246 points in 210 games. He shot .474 from the field, .422 from 3 and .926 from the foul line.

Brigham Young Cougars guard Jimmer Fredette (32) celebrates after beating San Diego State in NCAA basketball action in Provo, Utah, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011. (Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News) | Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News

During his four years at BYU, the Glens Falls, New York, native scored 2,599 points over 139 games. He was .455 from the field, .394 from 3 and .882 in free throws. Could he go toe-to-toe against Price, Miller, Bird, Thompson and Curry in a shooting contest?

“Absolutely! In my opinion, yes. For me, it’s all about who’s feeling good and who is hot in that moment. If you get into a rhythm early and you see that ball going in early, I can make 50 in a row and any of those guys could make 50 in a row,” he said. “I feel like I can shoot with the best of them. I wouldn’t have been able to play where I played if I couldn’t shoot the ball because I know it wasn’t my crazy athleticism!”

Fredette will take his shooting touch to the Paris Olympics and lead the United States against Serbia on July 30 in the 3x3 pool-play opener. During Team USA’s qualifying run, Fredette proved over and over that even at 35, like Price, Miller, Bird, Thompson and Curry, he can still hit from anywhere on the floor.

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