Last week we looked at some players on the cusp of free agency who were making some surprising postseason impressions, both positive and negative, on prospective employers. With the first round almost over and the conference semifinals about to begin, let's check in with some more soon-to-be free agents in the playoffs:
Reggie Evans, Clippers: Anyone who can spark a 27-point comeback in the playoffs, as he did in Game 1, deserves to be on this list, and his energy throughout the first round has been critical for the Clippers. His already superb number of rebounds per 36 minutes has jumped from 12.7 in the regular season to 13.7 in the playoffs, and, for what it's worth, has his team's best defensive rating in the playoffs, per Basketball-Reference.
Andre Miller, Nuggets: It's easy to forget about Miller sometimes, particularly since he's been coming off the bench for Denver. Yet the NBA's 10th leading assist-maker all-time reminded everyone, including the Lakers, of what he can do with a 24-point, eight assist performance full of clutch shots in Tuesday's Game 5. He's the team's third leading scorer in the postseason at 12.7 PPG, outdoing Arron Afflalo, who signed a $36.75MM deal before the season.
Jordan Hill, Lakers (restricted): He had his breakthrough in the final week of the regular season against the Thunder, and he's continued to justify coach Mike Brown's decision to use him as the primary backup to both Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol in the playoffs. He's pulling down more rebounds per game than Gasol in significantly fewer minutes, and has 25 offensive boards, more than anyone else in the postseason. Hill's rebounds-per-36-minutes number (13.4) nearly equals that of Reggie Evans.
O.J. Mayo, Grizzlies (restricted): The postseason is a terrible time to go through a shooting slump, but that's exactly what's happened with Mayo, who's hitting on just 31.4% of his field goal attempts against the Clippers. He went a combined 3-for-20 in Games 3, 4 and 5, and took only three shots in Game 6. His inability to efficiently handle the backup point guard duties — he's got 13 assists and 17 turnovers — isn't helping his cause, either.
Randy Foye, Clippers: Foye's minutes are up but his scoring is down for the playoffs, which is about as inauspicious as it gets for a free agent wing player. The culprit appears to his inability to get off shots and get to the line. His attempts in both categories are off while his postseason shooting percentage of 37.8% is not that far down from the 39.8% he shot in the regular season. His excuse may be that he's being guarded by Tony Allen, an elite defender, but Allen isn't with him on every possession. His Basketball-Reference defensive rating is the second worst on the team, so his struggles aren't limited to one end of the floor.
Jodie Meeks, Sixers (restricted): He started 50 games this season and played 24.9 minutes per contest, but barely got off the bench once he was removed from the starting five after Game 1 against Chicago. He took a total of three shots from the floor, missing each of them, in 32 minutes during the first round.