2. Derrick White — 2023-24 Salary: $18.35 Million
When he first joined the Celtics as a part of a trade back in February 2022, Derrick White left much to be desired. After all, he only averaged 11.0 points while shooting 40.9% from the floor and 30.6% from the three-point line over 26 subsequent games.
Fast forward to the 2022-23 campaign, and it was like a completely different version of White entered the building.
The Parker, CO native played all 82 games (70 starts) for the first time in his career last year, playing 28.3 minutes per outing along the way. By the time the smoke cleared, White finished with a 12.4 PTS/3.6 REB/3.9 AST line while shooting a career-high 38.1% on his three-point attempts.
Even though he’s a sparkplug on offense, White is also one of Joe Mazzulla’s most reliable defenders. He has no issue going head-to-head against the Eastern Conference’s top backcourts, earning him the reputation of being one of the better defensive guards in the Association.
Making just north of $18.35 million, it isn’t fair to say that White is being paid peanuts. On the flip side, we’re in a world where one-dimensional shooters make as much money, if not more, than that. The fact that he can shoot as well as he does while also being a responsible defender shows that White could be making much more.
Nevertheless, Boston is fortunate to have the ex-Colorado Buffalo signed for the next two seasons. Assuming he doesn’t regress, I won’t be shocked if he makes even more money when he becomes a free agent in 2025, further solidifying his underpaid status at the moment.