I believe Robert Covington deserves the title of most underrated player and I will explain why.
I believe Robert Covington's true defensive ability goes quite unnoticed!! I would be comfortable with Robert Covington guarding anyone in the NBA from the 1 to the 4. At just 6'6 Robert Covington is top 20 in the league in blocks this season. This is ahead of guys like Giannis, Jonas Valancuinas, Montrezl Harrell, and Dwight Howard!! So he's got the post D, but obviously he has the perimeter D as well. Covington is top 15 in steals this season ahead of Kyle Lowry, Lonzo Ball, Matisse Thybulle, and Donte Divencenzo. Covington is that guy on your team that can go out and lock up the other team's best player. In comparison to the rest of the NBA he is easily a top 10 perimeter defender arguably cracking the top 5! Covington is really just an outstanding defensive presence and it's something that needs to be noticed.
X factor for the Rockets:
Since Robert Covington is the only reliable defender on the rockets, he is really the x factor. If he plays at the defensive ability that we all know, the rockets could go further than expected. Where as if he has a hard time adjusting to this team and doesn't play the level of defense he can, the rockets are going to have a really hard time in the playoffs. The only concern for the rockets I have is even if Covington plays his best defense in the playoffs, it may not be enough. One guy can't stop an entire team and finals and conference finals teams have multiple guys that can step up on defense. Regardless, Covington will definitely make a huge impact on this team and will probbaly step up and become this teams third option.
Not much to say about Covington's offensive abilities as his impact will be on the defensive end but don't think he will completely slack on offense. He is a great shooter and can probably become a good catch and shoot option for Russ and Harden. This would fit perfectly as both players drive to the rim a lot and can kick it out to the corner for a catch and shoot 3. This would benefit Covington greatly as he is a 3 and D player so his skills in this scenario will be used perfectly!!
This is why I believe Robert Covington is the most underrated player in the NBA right now. Thoughts?