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10 Most Underrated Players in NBA History

Updated on April 18, 2018

10. Klay Thompson

Klay Thompson

Klay has been over looked by even his coach, Steve Kerr. Saying that Draymond Green is more valuable than Klay, which is just plain wrong.

In Klay's 7 seasons in the NBA he has put up numbers that are miles ahead of Draymond Green, also Klay is probably the second or third greatest shooter of all time.

Regular Season Averages: 19.2 points, 2.3 assists, 3.4 rebounds.

Playoff Averages: 19.1 points, 2.4 assists, 3.8 rebounds.

Klay defensive numbers are lacking but his advanced numbers are 16.5 career defensive win shares, which is phenomenal for a guard. Klay's numbers are lacking because of the players he has been with for a decent amount of his career, Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant are both ball dominant players so that limits Klay's shots. This searson he still put up 20 points per game.

Career Awards: 4 All-Star, 2 All-NBA Selections, 2 NBA Championships.

Klay is the most underrated defender in the NBA right now, he is a lockdown guard that can defend some of the best guards in the NBA.

9. Scottie Pippen


Scottie Pippen was always a Robin to Michael Jordan's Batman, but everyone in NBA History would be so that's ok. But it doesn't change the fact that it makes him look worse because people look over him, Michael Jordan himself said that Scottie was a Superstar and I tend to agree slightly. Scottie is one of the best passers in Chicago Bulls history and led the team in assists per game more than 3 times.

Regular Season Stats: 16.1 points, 2 steals, 0.8 blocks, 6.4 rebounds, 5.2 assists.

Regular Season Stats With The Bulls (Excluding his last season because he only played 23 games): 18 points, 2.1 steals, 0.9 blocks, 5.3 assists, 6.8 rebounds, 48.3 field goal percentage.

Playoff Stats: 17.5 points, 7.6 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals, 1 block.

Playoff Stats With Bulls: 18.1 points, 7.7 rebounds, 5.2 assists, 2 steals, 1 block.

Pippen was an All-Star level defender and scorer, he put up 20 points per game 4 times. He averaged more than 2 steals per game 6 times and a block or more 5 times. Pippen's career PER is 18.6, which is great on it's own, but his career PER with the Bulls is 19.8, which is phenomenal considering is role on the team.

Career Awards: 7 time All-NBA Selection, 7 All-Star Selections, 6 Time NBA Champion, 10 All-Defensive Selections, and 1 Time Steal Championship.

Pippen is 43rd all time in career win shares with 125.08.

Pippen overall is so overlooked just because of his role on the Bulls as Jordan's sidekick, but that doesn't change the fact that Pippen is a top 25 player of all time.

8. Dennis Rodman


Dennis Rodman, I think, is the greatest rebounder of all time, he averaged 13.1 rebounds for his career. At the age of 38 Dennis averaged 14.3 rebounds peer game, granted he only played 12 games but still, the fact that at the age of 38 he grabbed over 12 rebounds in a game even once is astonishing. Rodman led the league in rebounds 7 times, and in those seasons he averaged 16.7 rebounds, hitting his peak in the 1991-92 season averaging 18.7 rebounds per game. But Rodman's TRUE greatness comes in the form of advanced numbers, his per 100 possessions numbers are insane. From the years 1991-2000 his per 100 numbers are 24 rebounds, 9 points, 0.9 steals, and 0.7 blocks per game. Keep this fact in mind, he's only 6 foot 7 inches.

Regular Season Stats: 13.1 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, 0.8 blocks, 7.3 points.

Playoff Stats: 10 rebounds, 6.4 points, 0.6 steals, 0.6 blocks.

Rodman's game did go down in the playoffs but 10 rebounds per game is still amazing. Also, from 1994-96 Rodman averaged 14.2 rebounds in the playoffs.

7. George Gervin


George Gervin was an all-around player that dominated on both ends of the court, on defense he locked down his opponents and on offense he drove the paint and slammed the ball into the hoop. But he's always been overlooked because he never won a championship or an MVP, he should've won 2 MVPs in my opinion. He led the league in scoring 4 times and is easily one of the greatest scorers of all time.

Regular Season Stats: 25.1 points, 1 block, 1.2 steals, 5.3 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 50.4 percent field goal shooting.

Playoff Stats: 26.5 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 block, 1 steal, 50.1 percent field goal shooting.

George has a career PER of 21.4 and 114.5 win shares.

Career Awards: 4 Time Scoring Champion, 9 Time All-NBA Selection, 12 Time All-Star.

6. Bernard King


Bernard King has been forgotten for the same reason as George Gervin, he never won an MVP or a championship. Despite possibly being one of the greatest scorers of all time as well. Bernard was a mediocre defensive player so he was never a franchise type player, but he was still an absolute superstar on offense, which was shown in the 1984-84 season where he averaged 33 points per game, taking home the scoring championship for the season.

Regular Season Stats: 22.5 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists.

Playoff Stats: 24.5 points, 4.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists.

With a 19.2 PER for his career his career numbers don't look so good, but when you take only his stats from 1977-87 he puts up 23.7 points, 6.6 rebounds, 3.1 assists, and 1.2 steals per game with a PER of 20.0.

Career Awards: 1 time scoring chmapion, 4 time All-Star, 4 time All-NBA.

5. Ben Wallace


Ben Wallace has been forgotten for the same reason as Dennis Rodman, he could never score. But it doesn't change the fact that he was a defensive force and is one of the greatest defensive players of all time. The reason he is on this list is because he isn't in the Hall of Fame. Ben Wallace is tied with Dikembe Mutumbo for the most Defensive Player of The Year Awards with 4.

Regular Season Stats: 5.7 points, 9.6 rebounds, 2 blocks, 1.3 steals.

Playoff Stats: 7.2 points, 11 rebounds, 2 blocks, 1.5 steals.

Ben Wallace in his prime is possibly the greatest defensive player of all time, from the years 2000-2008 Ben Wallace average 2.5 blocks, 1.5 steals, 7.4 points, 12.1 rebounds, with only 2 personal fouls per game, to average 2.5 blocks and 12 rebounds and only average 2 personal fouls per game is phenomenal.

Career Awards: 2 Rebound Championships, 1 Time NBA Champion, 4 Time DPOY, 1 Time Block Champion, 5 Time All-NBA Selections, 6 Time All-Defensive Selections.

He is not in the Hall of Fame.

4. Dwight Howard


This selection is more because of how he is seen now, now he is on the Charlotte Hornets and is seen more as a huge bust that is just an average player now. But this season he put up 16.6 points, 12.5 rebounds, 1.6 blocks, and 1 steal per game. He has a PER of 20.5, which is amazing. I think he is still a top 3 center in the NBA. Howard has always been an amazing player, but he has been forgotten since he left the Magic.

Regular Season Stats: 17.4 points, 12.7 rebounds, 2 blocks, 1 steal, 58.3 percent field goal shooting.

Playoff Stats: 18.4 points, 13.8 rebounds, 2.5 blocks, 1 steal, 58.6 percent field goal shooting.

Howard could still be a valuable piece on a championship winning team, if he were to sign with a team like the Rockets or the Spurs he could win multiple rings before he retires.

Career Awards: 8 Time All-Star, 5 Time Rebound Champion, 8 Time All-NBA Selections, 3 Time DPOY, 5 Time All-Defensive Selections.

3. Sidney Moncreif


Sidney Moncreif is an extremely unknown player back in the 80s, he was a shooting guard for the Milwaukee Bucks most of his career but after that he played one year with the Hawks and retired. He was a defensive force who's ability on defense, in his prime, could match Hakeem Olajuwon. Sidney even out dueled Michael Jordan in the playoffs, but Michael would get his revenge later in his career. Sidney could never get past the Eastern Conference Finals which definitely contributed to why he is not remembered.

Regular Season Stats: 15.6 points, 1.2 steals, 0.3 blocks, 3.6 assists, 4.7 rebounds.

Playoff Stats: 16 points, 1.1 steals, 5 rebounds.

Sidney's greatness comes in advanced numbers, for his 11 year career he has 30 defensive win shares, for a guard that's close to Michael Jordan's level of defense. His per 100 possessions numbers have him getting 24.7 points, 2 steals, and 7.4 rebounds.

From the years 1980-1986 he averaged 20 points, 1.4 steals, and 4.4 assists with 5.7 rebounds. now you may be thinking, "Why is he a defensive force?" Because of this one stat, while he guarded his opponent, on average, he allowed only 8.4 points per game, for his career. From 80-86 he only let up 6.0 points per game, some of the greatest defensive stats I've ever seen.

Career Awards: 5 Time All-NBA Selection, 2 Time Defensive Player of The Year, 5 Time All-Defensive Selections, 5 Time All-Star.

He is not in the Hall of Fame.

2. Shawn Marion


I didn't know who Shawn was until I researched this list, and when I realized who he was I thought "Why isn't he in the Hall of Fame?" I think you're starting to see a trend here, a good amount of the players on this list are underrated because they were not a superstar on offense but were a force on defense. Shawn was an amazing offensive player and an even better defensive player. He was a key part in the Dallas Mavericks 2010-2011 historic run. Shawn was drafted in the 1999-2000 season by the Pheonix Suns, he played with the Suns for 9 seasons.

Regular Season Stats: 15.2 points, 8.7 rebounds, 1.5 steals, 1.1 blocks.

Playoff Stats: 14 points, 8.6 rebounds, 1.2 steals, 1.2 blocks.

From the years 2001-2008 Shawn put up 19.2 points, 12.4 rebounds, 2.5 steals, and 1.3 blocks per game. Shawn Put up 20 or more points per game only twice but it doesn't change the fact that he was a phenomenal player in his prime.

Career Awards: 4 Time All-Star, 4 Time All-NBA, 1 Time NBA Champion.

He's not in the Hall of Fame.

1. Dominique Wilkins


Wilkins is somewhat remembered but everyone forgets how great he truly was because he, like almost everyone on this list, never won a championship or an MVP. Wilkins was one of the greatest scorers of all time when he was with the Hawks, he played 17 years in the NBA and carried the Atlanta Hawks team throughout the 80s and 90s.

Regular Season Stats: 25 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.5 assists.

Playoff Stats: 25.4 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.8 assists.

Dominique was always a mediocre defender at best, he only put up 1 steal and half a block a game. But when he was with the Hawks his scoring ability was more than enough compensation. From the years 1983-1993 Wilkins averaged 27.5 points, 7.1 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 1.5 steals.

Career Awards: 9 Time All-Star, 7 Time All-NBA, 1 Time Scoring Champion.

Does Ben Wallace Deserve To Be The HOF?

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Does Sidney Moncreif Deserve to be in The HOF?

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    • profile imageAUTHOR


      19 months ago

      TT, I disagree, but I can see where you're coming from.

    • Ty Tayzlor profile image


      19 months ago from Anywhere

      Scottie and Dwight Howard are more overrated than underrated


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