Portland’s Damian Lillard has been awarded his second straight Rookie of the Month award for the Western Conference. It comes as a surprise to basically nobody. As I noted in my recap of Portland’s win in New York City, Lillard trails a few big-name rookies in a couple advanced statistical categories, but that doesn’t mean Dame isn’t clearly the best rookie in his class.
Here is the official release from the team:
DAMIAN LILLARD NAMED KIA NBA WESTERN CONFERENCE ROOKIE OF THE MONTH FOR DECEMBER
Trail Blazers guard led all rookies in scoring, assists and 3-pointers made
PORTLAND, Ore. (January 2nd) – Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard was named Kia NBA Western Conference Rookie of the Month for December, it was announced today by the NBA.
Lillard, 22, led all rookies in scoring (18.2 ppg), assists (6.9 apg) and 3-pointers made (28) while helping lead Portland to a 9-4 record in December. His scoring average ranked 23rd in the NBA, and he placed 11th among league leaders in assists.
The 6-foot-3 point guard has now earned back-to-back Kia NBA Western Conference Rookie of the Month honors. He joins Brandon Roy (January, February and March 2007) as the only Trail Blazers in franchise history to win the award multiple times.
On Dec. 26, Lillard became the third-fastest Trail Blazer to reach 500 points in team history (27 games), trailing only Sidney Wicks (21 games) and Geoff Petrie (25 games).
Lillard is the only Trail Blazer to appear in every game so far this season. Portland selected Lillard with the sixth overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.
The Weber State product holds season averages of 18.4 points, 3.3 rebounds, a team-high 6.3 assists and 1.07 steals in 37.9 minutes.
Washington’s Bradley Beal earned Kia NBA Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month honors.
I’m expecting that Lillard will care more about getting blown out in Toronto than he will about getting another award, that being said, regardless of where this team finishes come the end of the season, Damian Lillard has been a resounding success through his first 31 games as a pro.