Just because an NBA player is overrated, that doesn’t mean they can’t still make a positive impact on a team. The two guys I’m going to talk about are actually both usual starters on their respective teams. They have found themselves on this list for separate reasons entirely however.
Jonas Valanciunas of the Toronto Raptors is an old school post scorer and defender who can’t move around the court very well. He struggles to create any shot for him or his teammates on the offensive end which causes Kyle Lowry and Demar Derozan to play isolation most times when he’s on the floor. He has major trouble defending top-tier centers and power forwards with the ability to handle to the ball like Demarcus Cousins and Draymond Green. He would be much better suited coming off the bench and occasionally starting if the matchups allowed him too. His toughness and post scoring could help the Celtics tremendously, and Al Horford’s outside shot and playmaking ability could compliment Valanciunas very well. The Celtics could still slide Horford to Center and Valanciunas off the bench if they were matched athletically by another team. I don’t see Valanciunas being an integral part of the Raptors system, especially if Kyle Lowry leaves this offseason.
D’Angelo Russel makes a bad team even worse. He isn’t athletic enough to punish a team driving to the hoop regularly. He isn’t a consistent enough shooter to hurt a team from three. He’s one of the worst perimeter defenders in the NBA, and maybe worst of all, he hasn’t proved himself to be a great teammate. Whether he exposes that Nick Young cheated on his fiance, or he stated that he didn’t want to play with Lonzo Ball, his overall maturity hasn’t been proven yet. Magic Johnson recently said that Russel wasn’t untouchable in trades, and I completely agree the Lakers should deal him before other teams realize his actual potential similar to what happened to Jahlil Okafor this year. I don’t think I could imagine Russel being anymore than what Lou Williams does. That being said Williams is a very valuable sixth man scorer for all the teams he’s played on in his career, but he hasn’t made a huge impact even while putting up solid numbers.