NBA Free Agents 2013: Underrated Playmakers Your Team Must Sign

Tyler BrookeSenior Analyst IIJune 30, 2013

CHARLOTTE, NC - JANUARY 09:  Al Jefferson #25 of the Utah Jazz reacts after his team scores a basket against the Charlotte Bobcats during their game at Time Warner Cable Arena on January 9, 2013 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
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All of the talk regarding free agency around the NBA is about Dwight Howard and Chris Paul, but there are some other players flying under that radar who could make a positive impact on most teams.

There are plenty of free agents to look at, and some of these players could go for very reasonable deals.  They may not be superstars—some may not even be starters—but these guys can come in and to do what it takes to help their team win.

While others talk about where D12 will end up, let’s look at some of the underrated guys who can help out a new team.


Devin Harris

Last year was a quiet one for Devin Harris while with the Atlanta Hawks.  He averaged 9.9 points and 3.4 assists while shooting 43.8 percent from the field.  He also only played 24.5 minutes per game—his lowest average since his second season in the NBA when with the Dallas Mavericks.

Still, this guy is a true playmaker at the point guard position, and he could help out a lot of teams as a backup or even a starter.

Let’s not forget how well Harris played while with the Nets in New Jersey.  He averaged 21.3 points and 6.9 assists per game during the 2008-09 season—easily his best season of his career.

It’s not that Harris is past his prime; it’s that he’s simply not getting as many minutes.  Last season wasn’t a bad season by any stretch. He came in and did his job effectively whether he was starting or coming off the bench.

A team like the Dallas Mavericks or Indiana Pacers could certainly use another point guard, and there’s little doubt that Harris will find a home and help his team win next year.


Nate Robinson

If we’re talking about playmakers, there are few more exciting than Robinson.

Ignore his 5’9’’ frame, this man can flat-out score.  While with the Chicago Bulls, Robinson averaged 13.1 points per game while shooting 43.3 percent from the field and an even more impressive 40.5 percent from behind the arc.

Robinson was even more impressive during the team’s playoff run.  He averaged 16.3 points per game, including a crazy playoff series against the Brooklyn Nets where he shot 50.5 percent from the field and went off for 34 points in Game 4.

There’s something about Robinson that makes him go off for ridiculous games from time to time, and teams tend to love a guy who could come in and put up big numbers—even coming off of the bench.

The Bulls were certainly happy to have Robinson while Derrick Rose was absent, and another team could certainly use his services.


Al Jefferson

For some reason, a lot of people tend to forget that Jefferson is on the market this offseason.  He’s been a tremendous player throughout his career, and whichever team picks him up will be getting a huge asset.

During last season, Jefferson had some very good numbers.  He put up 17.8 points, 9.2 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game.  He also had a 49.4 field-goal percentage and a PER of 20.99, the 17th-best rating in the NBA.

For nearly his entire career, Jefferson has played consistently.  He’s averaged 16.4 points and 9.0 rebounds per game with a PER of 20.6 while shooting 50 percent.

Playing for a team like the Utah Jazz probably makes Jefferson a little bit of a lesser-known star, but he is one who can absolutely come in and be one of the best—if not the best—player on his team.