Open mobile menu

Georgia Tech #ProJackets Basketball Report

By Jon Cooper | The Good Word

You better have star power when you wear No. 1.

Iman Shumpert had it when he wore it and played on The Flats from 2008 through 2011.

An explosive scorer and lockdown defender in his three years at Georgia Tech, he made the ACC All-Freshman team, then, as a junior, was named second-team All-ACC and made the ACC All-Defensive team. He joined Georgia Tech’s 1,000-point club (1,166, 33rd all-time), and his 111 three-pointers rank 18th all-time. His 382 career assists still rank 11th in program history, his 4.1 assists per game put him 10th, and his 207 steals are fourth.

He may not have shone brighter as a Yellow Jacket than on Jan. 25, 2011 at Alexander Memorial Coliseum, when he turned the Thrillerdome into his personal fiefdom, recording the fourth triple-double in Georgia Tech history (22 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists) in helping the Yellow Jackets to a 72-57 win over Virginia Tech.

It’s the last time a Yellow Jacket has recorded a triple-double, but it hasn’t been the last time that the Oak Park, Ill., native, showed that he belongs among basketball royalty.

Shumpert won an NBA championship in 2016 with the Cleveland Cavaliers, and, now in his eighth NBA season, is not only still playing at a high level, but is a King every day — a Sacramento King.

He moved west on Feb. 8, 2018 as part of a three-way, seven-player trade between Sacramento, the Utah Jazz and the Cavaliers, where Shumpert had spent the previous three-plus seasons years as a part of the court of King James (LeBron James). Iman was a key defensive stopper as part of Cavs teams that played in four straight NBA Finals, and earned the crown by beating the 73-win Golden State Warriors in the 2016 Finals.

The kingdom, where Shumpert now resides, doesn’t have those championship expectations…yet.

These Kings haven’t earned a playoff berth or even seen a winning season since 2005-06 — back when Shumpert was lighting it up at Oak Park-River Forest High School, where he’d be a McDonald’s All-American as a senior. But, with him starting and contributing on the floor as well as leading off it, Sacramento is in the process of doing both.

“It’s good so far. We’ve got a young core,” said Shumpert. “It’s an equal-opportunity offense. So it’s good for me.”

He is thriving in California’s capital and is enjoying being an elder statesmen — at age 28 — on the 11th-youngest team in the League (25.7 years old). Of the 17 players on the roster, Shumpert is one of only four with as much as five seasons of NBA experience — power forward Zach Randolph (17), center Kosta Koufas (10) and guard Ben McLemore III (5) are the others.

The move from the Eastern Conference, where he spent his first seven NBA seasons, to the powerful West has fit him just fine, thank you.

He missed only two of the team’s first 17 games — one of those was a “load management” night off — and has been a valuable voice of experience, with a team full of up-and-comers eager to hear about the experience that comes from logging close to 400 games (more than half of those starts) and 71 playoff games, the most of anyone on the Kings, and the three Finals appearances (he was hurt last year), easily the most.

 Utah Jazz
 NBA Experience: 
8 seasons
 Years at Georgia Tech: 2009-10
 Hometown: Atlanta, Ga.
 Status: ACTIVE
  10.8 ppg
6.9 rpg
0.7 bpg
57.1 FG%
  8-9 overall
12th – 4 GB
Streak: L 1
Last 10: 4-6
 Maine Red Claws (G League)
 NBA Experience: 
1 season
 Years at Georgia Tech: 2012-16
 Hometown: College Park, Ga.
 Status: ACTIVE
 12.2 ppg
5.2 rpg
1.2 apg
38.7 FG%
 2-4 overall
T-10th – 2.5 GB
W 1
Last 10: 2-4
 Minnesota Timberwolves
 NBA Experience: 
 Years at Georgia Tech: 2016-18
 Hometown: Snellville, Ga.
 Status: ACTIVE
 8.0 ppg
3.9 rpg
1.1 apg
36.9 FG%
 7-10 overall
14th – 5 GB
Streak: L 1
Last 10: 4-6
 Sacramento Kings
 NBA Experience: 
7 seasons
 Years at Georgia Tech: 2008-11
 Hometown: Oak Park, Ill.
 Status: ACTIVE
 9.5 ppg
3.3 rpg
1.8 apg
41.8 FG%
 9-8 overall
10th – 3 GB
Streak: W 1
Last 10: 5-5