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10 NBA Players Who Are Having Under-The-Radar Good Seasons

10 NBA Players Who Are Having Under-The-Radar Good Seasons

The league always has players that stand out above the rest. Players like Kevin Durant, Steph Curry, and Giannis Antetokounmpo always seem to steal the spotlight. Players like LeBron James are always living in the spotlight. With only so much light to shine on a player, we see other players get swept up in the wind.

At least 10 players are having a spectacular season. This may not land them on the All-Star team, but they are a major reason why their respective teams are competing. Without some of these successes, who knows where some teams would be.

These 10 players are having some under-the-radar great seasons.


Jalen Brunson

Jalen Brunson

2021-2022 Stats: 16.0 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 5.6 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.1 BPG

Brunson has steadily increased his minutes the last three years as a backup point guard. This year, he is averaging a career-high 30.7 minutes per game, which also includes a career-high 16.0 points per game. Brunson’s 5.6 assists are tied with Spencer Dinwiddie for the 15th most among all point guards, but he is also beating out the likes of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Marcus Smart, Mike Conley, Lonzo Ball, and De’Aaron Fox.

Brunson’s outside shooting took a hit this season, but his overall shooting did not. His 49.9% field goal percentage leaders are all point guards. Brunson is making 6.4 field goals out of 12.8 attempts. That is likely the main reason why he ranks ninth among all point guards in player efficiency rating.


Max Strus

Max Strus

2021-2022 Stats: 11.6 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 1.2 APG, 0.3 SPG, 0.1 BPG

If you don’t know who Max Strus is, here is a little tutorial. Strus went undrafted in 2019 and played at Lewis College and DePaul. He was picked up by the Chicago Bulls, where he played two games. He didn’t give a good enough impression, but the Miami Heat picked him up last year and he played in 39 games, where he averaged 6.1 points.

This year, Strus is a huge contributor off the bench for the Heat. He has played 29 games and averages 23.3 minutes per night. His 41.8% shooting from deep ranks fifth among all small forwards. Strus is making 2.6 out of 6.3 attempts as well. For someone who has climbed the ranks to get here, you have to respect everything he is doing right now.


Mikal Bridges

via USA TODAY Sports

via USA TODAY Sports

2021-2022 Stats: 12.4 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 1.8 APG, 1.3 SPG, 0.5 BPG

Bridges own a little bit more spotlight than others because he played in the NBA Finals last year. Bridges is a long, athletic small forward in this league, but he gets overlooked because the Suns have Chris Paul, Devin Booker, and Deandre Ayton. For his own sake, he is having a pretty great year.

On top of being asked to guard the best player on opposing teams, Bridges is shooting 52.0% from the field. That trails only LeBron James for best shooting percentage among small forwards. Granted, Bridges is making 4.9 shots out of 9.5 each night, but are we going to penalize him for being efficient in his shot selection? He is also shooting 40.6% from three-point range. If Bridges can shoot a higher clip at the free-throw line (84.8%), we could be talking about a 50-40-90 club member.


Cameron Johnson

Cameron Johnson

2021-2022 Stats: 11.9 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 1.3 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.3 BPG

Unlike Bridges, Johnson has a different role on the team. With that said, Johnson has never been viewed as a good shooter. He didn’t shoot very well last year, shooting under 35% from three-point range. This season, he ranks sixth in the league in three-point shooting. We aren't just talking about all small forwards. We are talking about all players.

Johnson has developed into a great catch-and-shoot player. He gets plenty of opportunities as he is making 2.5 three-pointers out of 5.8 attempts. With a strong shooter in Booker in the starting lineup, the Suns are benefiting from a great shooter in the second unit.


Josh Hart

Josh Hart

2021-2022 Stats: 13.2 PPG, 7.4 RPG, 4.4 APG, 0.9 SPG, 0.3 BPG

With Zion Williamson yet to play this season, the New Orleans Pelicans got off to a terrible start. Given that the team has hovered near the cellar of the NBA standings, it’s understandable that you haven’t seen the Pelicans on a nationally televised game. As for under-the-radar seasons, Hart is having an all-around great year.

Hart is shooting 51.6% from the field and rebounding at a fairly decent clip at 7.4 per game. What stands out the most is his playmaking, which is at 4.4 assists per night. That has doubled his career mark of 1.9 this year. He is known for getting into the lane and playing adequate defense in the past. This year, he has grown into an all-around player.


Desmond Bane

Desmond Bane

2021-2022 Stats: 17.5 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 2.4 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.5 BPG

All eyes are on Ja Morant each night in Memphis and rightfully so. The Grizzlies are contending for a top-four spot in the Western Conference as one of the league’s best surprises. Among other young talented players on this roster, Bane is one of them. Bane is a former No. 30 overall pick from 2020 that averaged 9.2 points per game in his rookie season. His second year is seeing his true potential.

Bane is shooting 47.3% from the field, 42.8% from three-point range, and 88.9% from the free-throw line. Those are borderline 50-40-90 club numbers, while also pulling in 4.5 rebounds and 1.1 steals. His 17.5 points per game are eighth among all shooting guards in the league, while he is ranked in the top-10 among players at the position in player efficiency ranking.


LaMarcus Aldridge

LaMarcus Aldridge

2021-2022 Stats: 13.3 PPG, 5.6 RPG, 0.8 APG, 0.4 SPG, 1.1 BPG

Last year, Aldridge played in only five games with the Nets after he announced his retirement. Aldridge has Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, which is a condition that causes the heart to beat abnormally fast for periods. It had been managed for most of his career, but symptoms arose in April, which forced him to step aside.

Over the summer, Aldridge came back because he said that the condition was under control. Nobody knew what to expect. Through 29 games, Aldridge is averaging 13.3 points, 5.6 rebounds, 1.1 blocks, and shooting 56.5% from the field. That also includes a starting role for the team.


Bobby Portis

Bobby Portis

2021-2022 Stats: 15.4 PPG, 9.2 RPG, 1.4 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.8 BPG

Portis has been forced to play the highest amount of minutes in his career at 28.4 per game. That was because of the injury to former starting center Brook Lopez. Portis hasn’t only delivered, but he is excelling. Along with his career highs in points and rebounds, Portis is leading all centers in three-point shooting.

His 42.8% shooting from deep is no outlier either. Portis is shooting 4.5 threes per game and making 1.9. Portis was the truly energized bunny when coming off the bench last year. Now, he is nearly averaging a double-double with exceptional outside shooting.


Seth Curry

Seth Curry

2021-2022 Stats: 16.3 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 3.9 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.1 BPG

Curry is taking 12.0 shots per game and his 51.4% field goal percentage ranks second among all shooting guards. That is a very stellar number to shoot who is also averaging 16.3 points per game. Right now, Curry could very well contend for membership in the 50-40-90 club. He is shooting 51.4% from the field, 41.1% from three-point range, and 87.3% from three-point range. With Ben Simmons not stepping foot on the court once this year, Curry has stepped up in his absence.

Curry has lived in his older brother’s shadow for all of his NBA careers. You can see that the chemistry between Curry and Joel Embiid’s dribble hand-off is a deadly weapon in the entire league. If Curry can make the 50-40-90 club, something his older brother Steph has done in his career, it would be one of the greatest spectacles to see ever.


Kevin Love

Kevin Love

2021-2022 Stats: 14.2 PPG, 7.4 RPG, 2.1 APG, 0.3 SPG, 0.2 BPG

The Cavaliers are a Cinderella story this season with a great deal of their resurgence coming from Love’s overall play. Love’s efficiency has soared through the roof. His player efficiency ranking among all power forwards ranks third, trailing only Kevin Durant and Giannis Antetokounmpo. On top of that, he is shooting 41.1% from three-point range, which is contending for a career-high.

Love went from a rebounding king to a stretch power forward when he was playing alongside LeBron James and Kyrie Irving. Now, he has managed to turn into a knock-down shooter when he is left alone. Throw in the fact that he has played 103 games combined the last three seasons, this is a magnificent comeback story. 

Credit for idea: CBS Sports

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