Often times, when a strong playoff team adds an unsigned free agent to its roster late in the regular season, it's overlooked.
Why wouldn't it be? Typically, here's a roster already playing well, and to the naked eye needs no personnel related improvements. But the future is unknown by all, and these signings are important for that very reason.
During the All-Star break, nobody knows who will be healthy, or what rotations might be altered by a debilitating slump.
Late-season signings are commonly viewed as "insurance," but in the NBA that metaphor doesn't quite hold up. More often than not, these players will be called into action in a situation where they're desperately needed to step up.
All five players listed here have not only played, but played well. They're ranked by their level of impact since the postseason started.
All statistics in this article are from Basketball-Reference.com unless otherwise noted.