Bulls’ Jimmy Butler, Rockets’ James Harden named NBA Players of the Week

NEW YORK – The Chicago Bulls’ Jimmy Butler and the Houston Rockets’ James Harden today were named NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for games played Monday, Dec. 22, through Sunday, Dec. 28.

Butler led the Bulls to a 4-0 week behind averages of 23.0 points (seventh in the conference), 7.0 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.0 blocks. His 40.2 minutes per contest led the league. On Dec. 22, Butler went 11-for-11 at the foul line en route to 27 points, and added 11 rebounds, five blocks and four assists during a 129-120 win over the Toronto Raptors.

Harden helped the Rockets to a 2-1 week, which included wins over the Portland Trail Blazers and Memphis Grizzlies. He averaged a league-best 34.7 points and added 7.3 assists (eighth in the conference), 4.3 rebounds and 2.3 steals. On Dec. 22, Harden posted 44 points, seven assists, five steals and three rebounds during a 110-95 win over the Trail Blazers.

Here is a recap of the week for Butler and Harden:

Jimmy Butler, Chicago Bulls

Dec. 22 vs. Toronto: Collected 27 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and five blocks in a 129-120 win over the Raptors.

Dec. 25 vs. L.A. Lakers: Scored 21points and added six rebounds, five assists and two blocks in a 113-93 win over the Lakers.

Dec. 27 vs. New Orleans: Tallied 33 points, five rebounds, two assists and two steals in a 107-100 win over the Pelicans.

James Harden, Houston Rockets   

Dec. 22 vs. Portland: Poured in 44 points and added seven assists, five steals and three rebounds in a 110-95 win over the Trail Blazers.

Dec. 26 @ Memphis: Tallied 32 points, 10 assists, eight rebounds and three blocks in a 117-111 overtime win over the Grizzlies.

Dec. 28 @ San Antonio: Scored 28 points and added five assists and two steals during a 110-106 loss to the Spurs.

Other nominees for the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Week were Atlanta’s Paul Millsap, Brooklyn’s Jarrett Jack, Detroit’s Andre Drummond, Los Angeles Clippers’ Jamal Crawford and Blake Griffin, New Orleans’ Anthony Davis, Phoenix’s Eric Bledsoe, Portland’s Damian Lillard and Wesley Matthews, and Toronto’s Kyle Lowry.