3 Under-the-radar difference makers who will have a huge impact in NBA playoffs

Keon Ellis (left) and D'Angelo Russell (right)
Keon Ellis (left) and D'Angelo Russell (right) / Ezra Shaw/GettyImages
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2. Grayson Allen

Now on his fourth team through six seasons, Grayson Allen may have finally found his home with the Phoenix Suns. In his first season with the team, Allen has seen career-highs in minutes per game (33.6), field goals made and attempted per game (4.5-8.9), field goal percentage (50.5%), three-pointers made per game and percentage (2.7 per game at 46.9%), free throws made per game (1.7 free throws per game), points per game (13.4), rebounds per game (3.8), and assists per game (3.1).

In addition, Allen has tied his career high in steals per game (0.9), and blocks per game (0.6). Allen's impact has been instrumental on the "super team" Suns, who have gone all in on focusing their roster construction towards having a superstar-filled roster (Kevin Durant, Devin Booker, and former All-Star Bradley Beal). Because of that, Allen was brought in to provide supporting production as a starter on a reasonable contract and has succeeded in his role thus far.

Allen's shooting has relieved pressure off of the Suns superstars and allowed them to play more freely with the needed space. Allen has been nearly automatic this season from deep, which makes doubling Kevin Durant or Devin Booker (when needed) nearly impossible to do consistently. On a two-year, roughly $19 million contract, Allen will expect a reasonable pay raise on his next contract.