SALT LAKE CITY — From one former college star to another, the Jazz just got a back-to-back dose of Damian and Jimmer.
Ex-Weber State point guard Damian Lillard scored 26 on the Jazz last Friday in his return to Utah as a member of the Portland Trail Blazers. And on Monday former BYU standout Jimmer Fredette returned with the Sacramento Kings.
He was a non-factor, going 0-for-5 from the field in 14-plus minutes of work. He also went 0-for-3 from behind the 3-point line but did hit a pair of free throws for two points.
Fredette and Lillard competing against each other in collegians, now they’re both working as guards in the Western Conference. Lillard has had a far better showing as a rookie and would appear to be in line for the NBA’s Rookie of the Year award.
Fredette, who is playing only 14 minutes a night, is in his second season with the Kings.
He came into Monday’s game averaging 7.5 points per game.
“I still have a lot of time, I think, in this league,” Fredette said. “People take different paths. Everybody comes out of college as a big-time player and they take different paths in the NBA whether they’re a guy that develops slower and has a better career later or if a guy starts playing well right away.”
Fredette said he has taken notice of Lillard’s stellar play with the Blazers.
“Obviously Damian’s playing really well right away, getting a lot of minutes,” he said. “(He has) been shooting the ball well, leading that team (and) doing a great job of it. Myself, (I’m) still trying to find more minutes. That happens, you can’t get frustrated. You’ve got to stay the course, continue to progress and I know I’ll have my time.”
Jazz 98, Kings 91
• BEST LINE: Randy Foye had 20 points on 6-for-12 shooting from the field and 3-for-5 behind the 3-point line.
• KEY STAT: On a night when the Jazz turned the ball over 22 times and got outrebounded 15-5 on the offensive glass, they held the Kings to just 40 percent shooting.
• SIDELINE MOMENT: Jimmer was booed; Jimmer was cheered. With so many fans on either side of the Utah-BYU rivalry, the former Cougar is a lightning rod when he comes to EnergySolutions Arena, even when he’s a non-factor in the game.
• HISTORY LESSON: Monday was the 26th anniversary of the night the 1987 Sacramento Kings scored just four points in the first quarter of what became a 128-92 loss to the Lakers. It was the fewest points scored in the first quarter of a game since the inception of the shot clock.
• INJURY REPORT: Mo Williams (thumb surgery) wasn’t available for the Jazz, nor was Gordon Hayward (right shoulder sprain) or Earl Watson (lower right leg bone bruise, stress fracture).
• NO MO: Mo Williams is a longtime San Francisco 49ers fan who spent much of last week telling his Jazz teammates how the Niners were going to win Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday. By now most fans know, they lost to the Baltimore Ravens.
Williams, conveniently, was missing from Monday’s shootaround and teammate Al Jefferson had fun with it.
“I didn’t want the 49ers to win because I didn’t want to hear Mo’s mouth,” he joked.
“He stayed away from us,” Paul Millsap said.
The truth is, Williams is not with the team because his wife, Keisha, on Friday gave birth to the couple’s fifth child, 7-pound Maxwell Roman Williams.
Williams, who Tweeted throughout the Super Bowl, used the popular social network to announce Maxwell’s arrival Feb. 1.
• UP NEXT: The Jazz will play host to the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday.