NEW YORK – The Chicago Bulls’ Nikola Mirotic and the Minnesota Timberwolves’ Andrew Wiggins today were named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month, respectively, for games played in December.
Mirotic ranked second among Eastern Conference rookies in scoring (9.9 ppg), rebounding (5.7 rpg) and field goal percentage (.439). He recorded double-digit scoring outputs in nine of Chicago’s 15 games in December, and posted one point-rebound double-double. Mirotic connected on 6-of-6 three-point field goals and scored a career-high 27 points on Dec. 19, during a 103-97 win over the Memphis Grizzlies.
Wiggins led all rookies in scoring at 14.6 ppg and minutes at 33.9 mpg in December. He placed third among Western Conference rookies in rebounding with 4.1 rpg and third in assists with 1.8 apg. The first-year swingman posted double-figure scoring outputs in 11-of-15 games in December, including a 23-point, 10-rebound effort on Dec. 10, as Minnesota topped the Portland Trail Blazers 90-82.
Here is a recap of the month for Mirotic and Wiggins:
Nikola Mirotic, Chicago Bulls
Dec. 3 @ Charlotte: Scored 11 points and added 12 rebounds during a 102-95 win over the Hornets.
Dec. 12 vs. Portland: Contributed 15 points and nine rebounds in a 115-106 win over the Trail Blazers.
Dec. 19 @ Memphis: Scored 27 points and pulled down eight rebounds in a 103-97 win over the Grizzlies.
Andrew Wiggins, Minnesota Timberwolves
Dec. 8 vs. Golden State: Scored 21 points and added five rebounds and three assists in a 102-86 loss to the Warriors.
Dec. 10 vs. Portland: Scored 23 points and added 10 rebounds, four assists and two steals in a 90-82 win over the Trail Blazers.
Dec. 23 @ Cleveland: Poured in 27 points on 9-of-16 shooting during a 125-104 loss to the Cavaliers.
Other nominees for the Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month were Denver’s Jusuf Nurkic, Milwaukee’s Jabari Parker, Minnesota’s Zach LaVine, Orlando’s Elfrid Payton, and Philadelphia’s K.J. McDaniels and Nerlens Noel.
Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month
The Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month are part of a series of oncourt performance awards called “The Kia NBA Performance Awards.” The series, currently in its eighth 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 Players of the Month during the regular season. In addition to continuing to serve as the league’s Official Automotive Partner, Kia is also the Official Luxury Vehicle of the NBA, following the introduction of the brand’s modern and elegant K900 rear-drive luxury sedan. For more information on the “The Kia NBA Performance Awards” visit www.NBA.com/awards.