By: Jay Yeomans
Published: March 10, 2019
The Sharks were in dire need of a huge performance from Jimmer Fredette to keep their playoff hopes alive, and the BYU legend delivered in a big way as Shanghai came away with a 110-78 win over the Nanjing Tongxi Monkey Kings on Sunday.
Fredette showed off his remarkable shooting ability in the crucial victory, finishing with a game-high 38 points on 13-for-25 shooting from the field, including a blistering 10-for-16 from 3-point land and 2-for-2 from the foul line. He added eight rebounds, four assists and a pair of steals in 40 minutes of work.
The former Cougar guard caught fire in the second quarter as he hit four triples in a span of six possessions as the Sharks turned a two-point lead into a 13-point cushion at the break.
Fredette had plenty of help on the inside as Luis Scola and Zhang Zhaoxu both came away with huge double-doubles. Scola finished with 16 points, 15 rebounds, and six assists while Zhang totaled 12 points, 14 rebounds, and three blocks.
The Sharks also got some key play off the bench from Liu Wei who registered 18 points on 7-for-11 shooting from the floor while dishing out six assists.
Isaiah Austin paced the shorthanded Monkeys Kings with 27 points and 11 rebounds, but it wasn’t nearly enough to overcome the absence of leading scorer, Joe Young.
Thanks to the big win, coupled with a 14-point loss by the Guangzhou, the Sharks now hold the 12th and final playoff spot with just one game remaining on the schedule.
On the season, Fredette is second in the CBA in scoring, averaging 37 points a night on 53 percent shooting from inside the arc, 42 percent from distance and 92 percent at the foul line. He also contributes 5.7 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 2.7 steals in 40.4 minutes.
Inside the numbers
- Thanks to 10 more 3-pointers, Fredette has now connected on a league-leading 212 triples through 42 games.
- Sunday marks the first time this season, and the fourth time since joining the Sharks, that Fredette has made at least 10 threes in a game.
- Not only was Fredette masterful at shooting the ball in the key win, but he was also exceptional handling the ball as well, finishing the game with no turnovers for just the second time this season.
- It was the 10th time this season where Fredette shot better than 50 percent from beyond the arc and 100 percent at the foul line.
Fredette and the Sharks are back at home on Wednesday in the final game of the regular season as they square off with the Fujian Sturgeons.
The Sturgeons have little to play for in their final game of the season, having already locked up the No. 7 seed in the playoffs. They are paced by the import pair of Andrew Nicholson and Pooh Jeter. Nicholson has had a big year in his second season in the CBA, averaging 28.3 points, 9.0 rebounds, and 1.9 assists, while Jeter chips in with 21.7 points, 7.3 assists and 5.1 rebounds in his seventh year in the league.
What’s at stake
With a win or a loss by the Long Lions, the Sharks will clinch the final playoff spot and head to the postseason for the third year in a row.