The NBA has been better and much competitive than ever in recent years. Throughout the season, a host of players have dazzled fans with their brilliant and exciting skills. Most of these players have also been fundamental to their various teams’ successes so far this season. However, with the spotlight on the NBA’s top Superstars such as the likes of LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo and James Harden along with some of the rookies like Zion Williamson and Ja Morant week in and week out, most of these players have gone under the radar this season despite proving their worth consistently this season. As a result, they have become underrated players so far.
We countdown some of the players who have made our top 5 picks for underrated players in the NBA so far this season.
1. Jayson Tatum (Boston Celtics)
The Boston Celtics have had a decent season and are currently third on the Eastern Conference with a 43-21 win-loss record. They are also in contention to make the playoff spots this season. One of the key factors behind the Celtics’ numerous successes so far this season has been the performances of their young talented Forward Jayson Tatum. The 22-year old has been outstanding for the Celtics in his third season with the team after being drafted third overall in the first round of the 2017 NBA draft. Before the start of this season, Tatum had already gained some recognition after his inclusion in the NBA All-Rookie First Team in his rookie season. Tatum also won the 2019 Skills Challenge during NBA All-Star Weekend. This season has seen him evolve into a bona fide star. This season, Tatum has averaged 23.6 points per game, 7.1 rebounds per game and 2.9 assists per game. In all, he has recorded 1390 points (the highest in his NBA career), 418 rebounds, and 174 assists. This season, Jayson Tatum ranks 16th overall for the most averaged points per game numbers. He was also part of this year’s NBA All-Star team as a reserve. He has also scored the most points for the Celtics in 23 games this season, with the biggest highlight being the 41 points he recorded away at Los Angeles Lakers earlier this year.
2. Donovan Mitchell (Utah Jazz)
Utah Jazz has been one of the surprise packages of the season so far. The team currently occupies the fourth position in the Western Conference courtesy of some of their talents on the roster. Alongside Center Rudy Gobert, Shooting Guard Donovan Mitchell has shone for Utah Jazz once again this season. The 2018 Slam Dunk contest winner has been integral to the successes of Utah Jazz in his third season for the team. This season, Mitchell has averaged 24.2 points per game, 4.4 rebounds per game and 4.2 assists per game. In all, Mitchell has recorded 1,525 points, 276 rebounds, and 264 assists in 63 appearances this season. He earned a spot in this year’s NBA All-Star team as a Western Conference reserve.
3. Devin Booker (Phoenix Suns)
The Phoenix Suns may be struggling this season, but their misfortunes have not affected the performances of Shooting Guard Devin Booker, who has one of the few bright spots for the team this season. Devin Booker has been a standout performer once again in his fifth season with the Suns. This season, Booker has averaged 26.1 points per game, 4.2 rebounds per game and 6.6 assists per game. He ranks 10th overall for the most averaged points per game numbers, making him one of the NBA’s consistent top performers this season. In 62 games for the Suns so far this season, Booker has recorded 1,619 points, 258 rebounds, and 408 assists. He was a selection for this year’s NBA All-Star team as a replacement for an injured Damian Lillard. He is currently on the sidelines with an injury.
4. De’Aaron Fox (Sacramento Kings)
Another player who has been instrumental for a struggling team this season is Sacramento Kings player De’Aaron Fox. The 22-year old Point Guard has massively improved his game in his third season with the Kings and could attract interests from other teams this summer. Last season’s NBA Most Improved Player Award nominee has averaged 20.4 points per game, 4.0 rebounds per game and 6.8 assists per game. His season averages for this season have been an improvement on last season’s averages even though he has played just 45 games this season.
5. Nikola Vucevic (Orlando Magic)
The oldest player on this list of top underrated performers in the NBA season is Orlando Magic’s Center Nikola Vučević. The 29-year old Montenegrin is currently in his eighth season with the team and has perhaps been the most significant factor behind Orlando Magic’s push for a playoffs spot so far this season. Last season’s NBA All-Star has become a focal point of the Orlando Magic team so far this season. This season, he has averaged 19.5 points per game, 11.0 rebounds per game and 3.7 assists. He is still on course to march his total tally for last season if the season resumes.