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NBA free agency is about superstars, first and foremost. The best players get the most money, and they generally get it the earliest. Star trades are also a big (and only getting bigger) part of the opening of free agency, as teams reset their rosters.

Once that first wave or two of free agency passes, that’s when a lot of the real work gets done. At that point, teams get to work signing lesser-known players using parts of their MLE, remaining cap space or sometimes even for the veteran minimum.

Here are some of the top under-the-radar free agents to keep in mind when everything starts swirling this weekend:

Dalano Banton (Toronto Raptors) – Unrestricted

Banton is huge for the point guard position, as he stands 6-foot-9. His statistical profile isn’t going to jump out at anyone, especially from last season. But Banton can play. He needs to shoot the ball more consistently to make it as a rotation player, but the rest of his game is pretty solid. His G League numbers, albeit only over 21 total games, show how solid Banton is all-around. That’s worth taking a shot on for your third point guard, with some upside.

Keita Bates-Diop (San Antonio Spurs) – Unrestricted

Bates-Diop has toiled in relative obscurity in San Antonio the last three years. His first year was nothing to write home about, but the last two seasons have shown real growth. Bates-Diop can play and guard 2-4. Last season, he had 51/39/80 shooting splits. If you believe that the jumper is real, especially from deep, Bates-Diop will be a free agency steal for someone’s rotation.

Jevon Carter (Milwaukee Bucks) – Unrestricted

It’s not that Carter is an unknown quantity. Most people know he’s good. But do most know just how good Carter is? He played in 81 games last season, which has value in and of itself. But Carter also shot 42.1% from three, which continued a four-year trend of being a good shooter. And that’s in addition to being a solid ballhandler, playmaker and a bulldog on defense. Unless he’s dead set on returning to Milwaukee, Carter should be making more than the minimum from a playoff contender that needs a guard.

Torrey Craig (Phoenix Suns) – Unrestricted

Craig is coming off the best season of his career, as he enters his age-33 season. He still gets after it on defense, but he showed a little more on-ball offensive ability last season, as well as hitting 39.5% from deep. It’s likely Phoenix will re-sign Craig, given their need for quality depth. But if Craig does get away, someone should get a relative bargain for a 3&D wing.

Drew Eubanks (Portland Trail Blazers) – Unrestricted

Eubanks had an outstanding run with the Trail Blazers to finish up the 2021-22 season. No one really saw it, because that was a bad and injury-ravaged team playing out the string. But Eubanks put up another solid season this past year with Portland too. He’s a terrific finisher around the rim, and a good shot-blocker and rebounder. Eubanks is also showing some early signs of developing a spot-up three-point shot. He’d be great as the primary backup/spot-starter at the five for any playoff team.

A.J. Green (Milwaukee Bucks) – Restricted

This takes some projecting, and a leap of faith, because Green has only played in 35 NBA games. But he can really, really shoot. And that’s become arguably the NBA’s most-prized skill. In those 35 NBA games, Green hit 41.9% on 105 three-point attempts per game. In the G League, Green hit 42.6% on 155 three-points, in just 15 games. He was also an efficient shooter on high three-point volume in college. In a league where everyone wants wing shooting, Green should be on a standard deal.

Trey Lyles (Sacramento Kings) – Unrestricted

It took a few years, and some bouncing around the league, but Lyles finally found his niche in the NBA. He was one of the better backup stretch bigs in the NBA last season. Lyles shot 36.3% on 3.2 three-point attempts per game last season. He’s also a good rebounder and solid positional defender. The Kings would love to have him back, but someone could make Sacramento pony up by offering a portion of an exception to sign Lyles.

Jaylen Nowell (Minnesota Timberwolves) – Unrestricted

Last season got a little sideways for Nowell. After a very good shooting year in 2021-22, he fell way off. Nowell shot 39.4% on three-pointers two seasons ago and then just 28.9% this past season. If you believe he’s closer to that 40% shooter, then he’s worth making a run at in free agency. Nowell has some on-ball playmaking ability, and was improved as a midrange shooter. He’s worth a gamble on a team-friendly deal, with the hope that he’ll re-discover his shooting stroke from the outside.

Orlando Robinson (Miami Heat) – Restricted

Robinson flashed in the 31 NBA games he played as a rookie. He’s got good hands and soft touch. He’s already a terrific rebounder, and should improve as a finisher around the rim. In 16 G League games, Robinson was pretty dominant. The Heat challenged him to shoot more from the outside too, which shows signs of potentially being a weapon for him at some point. This would be an upside play for a team that has room for a developmental big man.

Yuta Watanabe (Brooklyn Nets) – Unrestricted

Over the least three seasons as an at least semi-regular rotation player, Watanabe has shot 40.5% from three on 2.1 attempts per game. That’s pretty solid. He’s also a hustle guy, who never gives less than 100% effort. Watanabe’s all-out style also makes him a fan favorite everywhere he’s played. He’d make a wonderful fit as a bench player for any playoff team, because he’ll play hard, defend and hit threes at both forward spots.