NEW YORK – The Toronto Raptors’ DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry today were named co-winners of the Kia NBA Eastern Conference Player of the Month award for games played in January, and the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Kevin Durant earned the Western Conference honor.
DeRozan and Lowry led the Raptors to 12-2 record, the best winning percentage (.857) for a month with 10 or more games in franchise history. Toronto finished the month on a franchise-record 11-game winning streak.
DeRozan ranked second in the East in scoring (23.9 ppg) for the month and added 4.2 rebounds and 3.8 assists. He reached the 30-point mark four times, including a season-high 35 points in a 97-88 win over the Washington Wizards on Jan. 8. Lowry led the conference in minutes (39.0 mpg) and steals (2.36 spg), and ranked seventh in scoring (21.7 ppg) and fourth in assists (6.7 apg). He shot 45.1 percent from the field and 40.2 percent from three-point range. Lowry recorded nine games with at least 20 points and four games with 10 or more assists.
Durant finished second in the NBA in scoring (28.5 ppg) and added 9.3 rebounds and 4.3 assists as the Thunder went 13-3 in January. He shot 49.7 percent from the field and 88.8 percent from the free throw line. Durant scored at least 25 points 11 times, including a season-high 44 points in a 128-122 overtime win over the New York Knicks on Jan. 26. He grabbed at least 10 rebounds in eight games and dished out five or more assists in six contests.
Here is a closer look at December for DeRozan, Lowry and Durant:
DeMar DeRozan/Kyle Lowry, Toronto
Jan. 8 @ Washington: DeRozan scored 35 points and Lowry added 21 points and 10 rebounds in a 97-88 win over the Wizards.
Jan. 18 vs. Brooklyn: DeRozan scored 30 points and Lowry finished with 31 points and eight assists in a 112-100 victory over the Nets.
Jan. 28 vs. New York: DeRozan and Lowry each scored 26 points and Lowry added 10 assists in a 103-93 win over the Knicks.
Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City
Jan. 6 vs. Memphis: Scored 26 points and grabbed a season-high 17 rebounds in a 112-94 victory over the Grizzlies.
Jan. 26 @ New York: Scored a season-high 44 points to go with 14 rebounds and five assists in a 128-122 overtime win over the Knicks.
Jan. 29 vs. Houston: Scored 33 points and added 12 rebounds and three assists in 116-108 win over the Rockets.
Other nominees for the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month were Chicago’s Jimmy Butler, Cleveland’s LeBron James, Golden State’s Stephen Curry, Houston’s James Harden, the Los Angeles Clippers’ DeAndre Jordan and Chris Paul, Miami’s Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade, Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook, Portland’s Damian Lillard and Sacramento’s DeMarcus Cousins and Rajon Rondo.
Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month
The Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month are part of a series of oncourt performance awards called “The Kia NBA Performance Awards.” The series, currently in its ninth season, is part of a multiyear marketing partnership between Kia Motors America and the NBA, and includes five of the league’s most prestigious year-end honors: Kia Most Valuable Player Award, Kia Defensive Player of the Year, Kia Sixth Man Award, Kia Most Improved Player Award and Kia Rookie of the Year. It also includes the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month during the regular season. Kia serves as the Official Automotive Partner and Official Luxury Vehicle of the NBA. For more information on the “The Kia NBA Performance Awards,” visit NBA.com/awards.