Fredette received his nickname “Jimmer” from his mother, a substitute teacher. From his early childhood, he showed unusual dedication; TJ would later recall, “He was the most determined, competitive four-year-old I had ever seen.” He regularly played with TJ, seven years older, and TJ’s friends on the Fredette family’s backyard court; he was able to hit three-pointers at age 5, and developed countless moves to get around his larger opponents. TJ also remembered that his brother “willed himself to find ways to win, even if he was physically outmatched. From the time he was 10, I was telling everybody he was going to make the NBA.”
Family Movies of Jimmer Playing Basketball
Other family members assisted Fredette in his development. His father, a financial adviser, introduced Jimmer to schoolyard competition against adults at age 8. As Jimmer developed, his father took him on occasional road trips to Hartford and New York City for more intense competition, and also helped to coach his AAU teams. His mother allowed him to bounce basketballs throughout the house, and even built a dribbling studio for him in their basement. Her brother Lee Taft, a personal trainer who now operates a speed training school in Indianapolis, started him on running drills as a 5-year-old, and still works with Fredette.