The NBA is a league full of talented players. But some players are often not that effective on the court and are still rated as one of the best in their positions.
We take a look at some of the most over-rated players in the NBA.
5. Hassan Whiteside
If any casual NBA fan will look at the numbers Hassan Whiteside has averaged in the last five years, they will say that Whiteside is a defensive beast in the NBA.
By the basic stats, one may even debate why Whiteside is never in the running for the Defensive Player of the Year. Last season he averaged a career-high averaging 15.5 points, 13.5 rebounds and 2.9 blocks per game.
But if someone looks beyond the numbers and looks at the way Whiteside plays, one will definitely identify the holes in his game. He is very slow to identify the play that is going on.
If you compare him to someone like a Rudy Gobert, he is not that agile and has a very slow reaction time. It always seems like Whiteside is not trying enough to defend.
His impact is also apparent in the defensive end, as the Blazers ended the season in the bottom five teams defensively despite Whiteside’s numbers.
Multiple NBA teams also identified his defensive faults, and despite him being a free agent, no top team signed him. He will now play with the Sacramento Kings for the upcoming season.
4. Danny Green
Danny Green has been heralded as one of the best wing defenders in the NBA. He is also known for the impeccable clutch threes he scored for the Portland Trail Blazers and the San Antonio Spurs.
When the Los Angeles Lakers brought him in, it seemed like a no-brainer. One year later he finds himself at the Philadelphia 76ers. When you look at the numbers, they are not that astounding.
In his 11 years in the league, he has made the All-Defensive Team once and has averaged more than 10 points only thrice.
His form saw a massive decline, especially in the Lakers where he averaged 36.5% from the three in regular season and 33.9% from the three in the Playoffs. He was also not prolific at the defensive end.
3. Kemba Walker
When Kemba Walker joined the Boston Celtics, it looked like the 30-year-old finally had a solid chance to challenge for the title and prove himself as an elite player.
In the Celtics, Walkers’ numbers have somewhat dwindled. For the last season he averaged 20.4 points, 4.8 assists and 3.9 rebounds, per game. These numbers are good for any decent point guard.
But when you are one of the best-paid guards on the team, you are expected to put forth much more than that. The Celtics signed the 30-year-old in a 4-year deal worth $142 million.
Apart from the disappointing returns, the 4-time All-Star has also missed multiple games for the Celtics. He is even set to miss the first half of the season due to an injury.
2. Kyle Kuzma
Ever since his debut for the Lakers, fans have been hopeful of Kyle Kuzma emerging as a new star for the franchise. Fast forward to 2020, Kuzma’s stats are worse than those in his debut season.
The 25-year-old showed potential when he started for the Purple and Gold. He stepped up, especially in the 2018-19 season when LeBron James suffered from an injury.
But once Anthony Davis and a fit LeBron James joined the team, Kuzma just wasn’t the same. It’s not like he hasn’t been given the opportunity. Kuzma just hasn’t taken his chances in the team. Last season he averaged 12.8 points, 1.3 assists and 4.5 rebounds per game.
He was probably not traded because of his low salary. Now that he has accepted a 3-year extension worth $40 million, if he does not perform this season, Rob Pelinka might just trade him.
1. Lonzo Ball
When Lonzo Ball was drafted as the second pick in the 2017 NBA draft, big things were expected for him. He had already been deemed as one of the best playmakers of his class.
In his first season with the Lakers he played 52 games and averaged 10.2 points, 7 assists and 6.9 rebounds. In the next season, he understandably had a dip in form given that LeBron James was the main ball handler for the Lakers.
The Lakers finally traded him along with Ingram and Josh Hart to the New Orleans Pelicans. Much was expected of the 22-year-old, but somehow he has failed to live up to those expectations.
He could not elevate his game like Brandon Ingram did and was much more reliant on three-point shooting for his points. This saw a significant jump in the number of attempts and a decent efficiency of the three-point line.
Last season he only averaged 11.8 points, 7 assists and 6.1 rebounds. These numbers are very similar to his numbers from the rookie year, showing minimal progress.
He still is a good passer, but nowhere near elite when you see his numbers. It’s time he steps up or he might just be considered as a bust.
The NBA has many quality players. These players are talented in their own right, but due to inflated statistics of some players and over-estimation of the potential of some, these players have been overvalued and thus make this list.
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This post was last modified on December 24, 2020 1:45 am