The NBA playoffs have been exciting from day one, with many unexpected outcomes throughout the league including the Chicago Bulls' 2-0 series lead over the first-seeded Boston Celtics. The post-season usually presents a handful of unsung heroes, surprising players who step to the occasion and deliver for their teams. These five listed below have surprisingly made a huge impact on their teams' playoffs success.
It was an inconsistent, drama-filled #Regular Season for #Rajon Rondo, but he has flipped the script instantly in the playoffs.
In two games, he is nearly averaging a triple-double, putting up 11.5 points, ten assists, and 8.5 rebounds. Rondo had his fingerprints all over Game 2 to help the Bulls take a commanding 2-0 lead. He was all over the place, making impactful plays. The only question is where was this version of Rondo during the season?
All season long, #Tony Parker was a non-factor as age was clearly showing. He had an up-and-down, declining year but has reestablished himself as a solid point guard again. Parker has been averaging 16.5 points in his two games but what's more surprising is his ability to hit the three-ball. Even in years before, he was never known for his outside shooting, but Parker already has five three-point makes on 71.4 percent shooting. His consistency so far has helped the San Antonio Spurs easily capture a 2-0 series lead.
With the way, Chicago has played, of course, there has to be two Bulls on this list. Robin Lopez is dominating the Boston Celtics with his size, averaging 16 points and nine rebounds.
He is feasting inside against the undersized, soft Celtics big men. Lopez has created a mismatch and has been an essential part of Chicago's early success.
Shaqtin-a-fool MVP? Hardly. JaVale McGee has provided the Golden State Warriors with a bundle of energy in limited time. He's averaging 10.5 points, five rebounds, and three blocks on 10-of-11 shooting in 11.5 minutes per game. That's incredible, but the most important stat is that he is a plus-27 in the 23 total minutes he's played. McGee has made a major impact in limited minutes and was a crucial part of the team's 29-point blowout in Game 2.
After being a starter for most of his career, Greg Monroe accepted a bench role this season, which caused a reduction in minutes and production. At one point, the Milwaukee Bucks were prepared to trade him but couldn’t find suitors. Now, he has suddenly become an indispensable part of the team’s success. In two games, he is averaging 16 points and 9.5 rebounds on 55 percent shooting, elevating his level of play in the playoffs. Monroe has become that veteran player the team leans on anytime they need a big bucket, and he has delivered.