The National Basketball Association (NBA) is currently home to a ridiculously high number of talented players. We all know the most famous players in the league; yet, given the level of competition in the league, it’s safe to say that there are players who have gone unnoticed.
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Following the end of the 2021-22 season, we’ve compiled a list of the most underrated players in this year’s competition. It’s unfortunate that these players haven’t received the level of recognition their talent deserves, but we can only hope that will change in the near future.
Trae Young didn’t get much media attention until the end of the season. Trae Young is averaging 28.4 points, 3.7 rebounds and 9.7 assists per game this season. His shooting spreads of 46.0/38.2/90.4 are career highs. Trae Young is an attacking force to be reckoned with. He recently became the first NBA player to lead the league in points and assists since 1973. There’s enough evidence to say he should be in the top 10 in the NBA.
Trae Young has had a terrific season despite the Atlanta Hawks’ struggles. Trae Young’s talent and mentality are well suited to the structure of knockout tournaments. Maybe he’ll lead the Hawks to the playoffs, and while no one believes they’ll go far, they still have a chance if Trae Young continues to play so effectively.
Despite being an NBA champion and All-Star, many wrote off Pascal Siakam after his poor season the previous year. Pascal Siakam remains a dynamic three-tier goalscorer and defensive annoyance. Its length and speed allow it to effectively defend several positions on the field. Pascal Siakam’s 22.8 points per game average this season has been accompanied by career highs in rebounds (8.5) and assists (5.3) for him.
Pascal Siakam’s presence on both sides of the field helped the Toronto Raptors earn the fifth seed in the East. Even though his last playoff performance wasn’t great, he’s probably improved since then. Over the last 20 games of the season, he averaged 27.0 PPG, 8.8 RPG, and 5.6 APG. The Raptors need him to maintain that level of play on the biggest stage, and maybe those numbers will translate into the playoffs.
Brandon Ingram should have been an All-Star. This season, he averaged 22.7 PPG, 5.8 RPG, and 5.6 APG. Brandon Ingram’s performances kept the New Orleans Pelicans afloat ahead of the CJ McCollum deal. Brandon Ingram is now averaging a career-high 5.6 assists per game. Considering he’s at the center of opposing defenses and the Pelicans have been without Zion Williamson all year, that’s a staggering feat.
Brandon Ingram’s value is best illustrated by the Pelicans’ struggles without him. Without Brandon Ingram’s score and play, they’re 7-20. Brandon Ingram’s recent game against the Lakers showed his potential as a late game scorer. The Pelicans’ 2018-19 season is a Hit regardless of Brandon Ingram’s playing performance.
Having missed a significant part of the season through injury, Bam Adebayo may well be underrated this year. Bam Adebayo, however, is making big gains, especially in his attacking game. He set career highs in points per game (19.1) and free throws (6.1) this season. Bam Adebayo’s improvement at the inside position is evident as he was able to get to the line more frequently and efficiently this season.
Bam Adebayo is averaging a career-high 1.4 steals per game and continues to be a solid 5-position defender. The Miami Heat center had a career-best season this year, and he was instrumental in the team’s success as a pivot on their defense and a reliable scoring option off the bench. True two-way big men like Bam Adebayo, effective on both sides of the pitch, are rare; it will be interesting to follow its development to see if it can reach even higher levels of excellence.
Dejounte Murray is often overlooked when discussing bright young point guards. A fantastic basketball player who is often overlooked by other NBA teams is the one who represents the San Antonio Spurs to the general public. Dejounte Murray, a player known for his Versatility, is able to score at will and hold his own defense against NBA stars on the perimeter. This season, Dejounte Murray is averaging 21.1 points, 8.3 rebounds, 9.2 assists and 2.0 steals per game. While it’s true that Dejounte Murray isn’t a particularly good 3-point shooter, he more than makes up for that shortcoming with his height and length, which allow him to be a deft finisher in the paint. At this point in his career, the only aspect of his game other than his shooting that can use a little work is his defense. We can only hope that Dejounte Murray will make the necessary adjustments to his game in order to benefit immensely from an improvement in this particular aspect of his game.