The 14 Most Underrated NBA Players

Who is the most slept on player in the league?

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It is commonplace in sports culture today to label a player a "bust" way too early in their career. Whether they live in the shadow of an older brother or were a top pick that didn’t have instant success, athletes are riddled with expectations before they even step on the court. To check out some of the most highly rated NBA prospects ever, check out this article. In the ever-evolving landscape of the NBA, where narratives often focus on the brightest stars and dynamic duos, it is essential to recognize and appreciate the underrated players who contribute significantly to the league's rich tapestry. They may not always be the headline grabbers, but their impact is undeniable, showcasing the depth and diversity of talent that defines the world of professional basketball.

Here are the 14 most underrated players currently in the NBA, unranked. For this list, we included their career stats to get an idea of their overall performance as a player.

RELATED: 10 NBA Teams With The Most Championships

*All stats are from Basketball-Reference

1. Seth Curry - Dallas Mavericks

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(Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)

10.5 points, 2.1 assists, 43.2% 3-pt

When the name “Curry” is mentioned, it’s hard not to immediately think of all-time three point record champion Stephen Curry. In the shadows of the two-time league MVP is his younger brother, Seth Curry, who can do just about everything Steph can do, just not quite at the same production level.

Efficiency wise, Seth Curry has a TS% of 63%, which would place him top 15 in this category. If you turn on a Mavericks game it’s easy to spot Curry as he roams around the perimeter waiting for his catch-and-shoot threes. One of the strongest aspects of his game is the confidence he shoots with. The second the basketball touches Curry’s hands you can see in his body language that he thinks the shot’s going in. 

2. Bobby Portis - Milwaukee Bucks

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(Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

11.6 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.2 assists, 38.1% 3-pt

When Bobby Portis first entered the league as a Chicago Bull, he was praised for his high motor and effort on both sides of the floor. That reputation has only grown since the former Arkansas Razorback joined the Milwaukee Bucks.

Portis has turned into an integral part of the Bucks championship rotation. Increasing his production from beyond the arc and being a menace on defense, he never truly gets the roses he deserves. The Bucks remain one of the best teams in the NBA because of glue guys like Bobby Portis.

3. Jalen Brunson - New York Knicks

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15.4 points, 4.4 assists, 3.2 rebounds

Even after winning two national championships at Villanova as well as the John R. Wooden award, Jalen Brunson’s future in the NBA was blurry. Some scouts weren’t sure if he could transition to the playstyle of the NBA. He has proved all those doubters wrong, solidifying himself as one of the top point guards in the league.

Brunson plays an extremely high-IQ brand of basketball and relishes the role of floor general, bringing a sense of patience on his drives that frankly can’t be taught. Brunson’s impact for the Knicks cannot be understated, as he adds a floor general that will spur the tempo of the game. He was awarded a large contract with the Knicks and has brought them back into the Playoffs. Is this the year Brunson finally makes an All-Star team and/or the year the Knicks take the next step and become legit contenders?

4. Dejounte Murray - Atlanta Hawks

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14.6 points, 5.0 assists, 5.8 rebounds, 1.4 steals

Dejounte Murray was traded to the Atlanta Hawks in the 2022 offseason and is paired up with Trae Young in the backcourt. Although there are trade rumors swirling around his name right now, Murray is still one of the best two-way players in the league today. His ability to guard on-ball while simultaneously scoring at will makes him a player that could fit on any championship team.

5. Jarrett Allen - Cleveland Cavaliers

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12.2 points, 9.0 rebounds, 1.3 blocks

The Cleveland Cavaliers were one of the most impressive young squads last NBA season. The man-in-the-middle, Jarrett Allen, can be thanked for much of this success.

Acquired via trade from Brooklyn, Allen has been an unstoppable force defensively for the Cavs. He has one of the highest motors in the league, actively surveying the floor for the best positioning. An underrated aspect of Allen’s game this season has been his on-ball defending. The Cavs love to switch on defense, and Allen has shown he can even defend guards on the perimeter. With his intense defensive approach the Cavaliers success will likely continue. 

6. Tobias Harris - Philadelphia 76ers

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(Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)

16.3 points, 6.1 rebounds, 2.3 assists

Tobias Harris is known for his versatility as a forward. He can play both the small forward and power forward positions and is recognized for his scoring ability, shooting, and all-around skills on the court.

Throughout his NBA career, Harris has been a part of multiple teams, including the Milwaukee Bucks, Orlando Magic, Detroit Pistons, Los Angeles Clippers, and Philadelphia 76ers. He has been a consistent performer, showcasing his scoring and rebounding capabilities. Even today he's proving to be a contributing member to the title contending Sixers.

7. Malcolm Brogdon - Portland Trailblazers

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(Photo by Chris Marion/NBAE via Getty Images)

15.4 points, 4.6 assists, 4.1 rebounds

There have been few players as fundamentally sound as Malcolm Brogdon since entering the league in 2016. Brogdon joined an improving Milwaukee Bucks franchise and won Rookie of the Year, but signed with the Indiana Pacers before seeing the Bucks win a championship.

Brogdon now plays on the rebuilding Portland Trailblazers, and has made a huge impact in the locker room. Brogdon can really do anything on and off the floor, fitting the mold of a modern-day combo guard to a tee.

8. Grayson Allen - Phoenix Suns

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10.1 points, 2.9 rebounds, 1.8 assists

Grayson Allen was one of the most scrutinized NCAA basketball players in recent memory, and many are quick to dismiss him because of it. However. he was a great fit for the Bucks last season, serving a next man up role amongst various injuries and positive covid cases. Now playing in Phoenix, Allen has seen the most playing time in his career, averaging 33.3 minutes per game.

Serving his role on offense, Allen can be found roaming the perimeter most possessions. He is a constant threat to knock down the three, shooting 46.8% from long distance on 5.5 attempts a game. Allen may be hated for his time at Duke, but there is no denying that he's made a big impact at the NBA level. 

9. Desmond Bane - Memphis Grizzlies

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17.4 points, 4.2 rebounds, 41.7% 3-pt

With Ja Morant sidelined due to suspension and then injury, the Grizzlies needed someone to step up. They got all that and more in second year guard Desmond Bane.

Increasing his scoring average every year, Bane has been a key scoring threat for the Grizzlies since entering the NBA in 2020. Unlike many other players on this list, he is an excellent scorer and shooter off-the-dribble. With combination of hesitations and quick step-backs, his bag runs deep. The Grizzlies have an exciting young core and Bane will be a highlight of that for years to come.

10. Jalen Williams - Oklahoma City Thunder

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15.5 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.6 assists

Jalen Williams was selected 12th overall in the 2022 NBA draft, alongside four other OKC draft picks. He has distanced himself among that group as one of the best, becoming an integral part of the now dominant Oklahoma City Thunder.

What makes J-Dub so good is how efficient he is every time he steps on the court. This season, he is shooting a spectacular 54.5% from the field on 13.1 attempts a game. Alongside Shai and Chet, Williams is a key reason why the Thunder currently sit second overall in the West.

11. Naz Reid - Minnesota Timberwolves

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(Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

10.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.0 assist

To some he may just be a meme, but to others he is the backbone of the best team in the Western Conference. Although Naz Reids name gets thrown around a lot to make funny content, the 24-year-old center is one of the best and most consistent in the NBA.

Despite the Timberwolves adding big man Rudy Gobert a few years ago and already having an all-star big in Karl-Anthony Towns, Reid has seen his minutes per game go up each year since 2021. Today, the Wolves center is averaging 22.5 minutes per game.

12. Luke Kennard - Memphis Grizzlies

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9.8 points, 2.0 assists, 40% 3-pt

Casual NBA fans were mystified when the Clippers awarded Luke Kennard a four-year, $64 million contract extension last December. This deal was actually a steal for the Clippers.

Kennard has knocked down 45% of his three’s while attempting over 6 a game. An absolute menace roaming the floor, Kennard is primed to knock down a shot at any second. An underrated way that Kennard was used in the Clippers offense is through the pick-and-roll with Paul George. The Clippers liked to run a set where Kennard sets an on-ball screen for Paul George and either rolls to the free-throw line or out to the perimeter for an open shot. Today, Kennard is an integral part of the Memphis Grizzlies, averaging 23 minutes per game.

13. Isaiah Hartenstein - New York Knicks

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5.7 points, 5.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists

Look at the leaderboards for any of the advanced stats and you’ll see a lot of the same names: Stephen Curry, Nikola Jokic, Jimmy Butler, Lebron James—and Isaiah Hartenstein.

After spending most of his first three seasons floating around the NBA’s fringes, the 25-year-old German big man's performance last season netted him a two-year, $16 million deal with the Knicks in free agency. While his counting stats are fairly modest, they belie his true impact. He’s a clever passer who conducts offense from the elbows, ranks in the 91st percentile as a pick-and-roll finisher, and is a heady rim protector who patrols the backline for one of the NBA’s best defenses, which is doubly important while the Knicks are without injured big man Mitchell Robinson. 

14. Jordan Clarkson - Utah Jazz

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(Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)

16.0 points, 3.4 rebounds, 2.8 assists

More and more today we see players reluctant to come off the bench. When Jordan Clarkson arrived in Utah he had shown to be an impactful NBA player, but his ceiling was still a mystery. He embraced his role on the bench and has carved out a remarkable NBA career so far. The 2020-21 Sixth Man of the Year award winner, Clarkson has cemented himself as an all-time great coming off the bench.

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