|View single post by lobo316|
|Posted: Fri Dec 2nd, 2016 03:21 am||
|Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James and Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook have been named the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month for games played in October and November.
James has led Cleveland to the best record (13-3) and point differential (7.5) in the Eastern Conference, while averaging 23.5 points and career highs in both rebounds (8.1) and assists (9.3).
The Cavs, for all their world-beating prowess early this season, have actually been outscored by nearly seven points per 100 possessions when James is on the bench. When he's on the floor, they outscore opponents by 12.4 points per 100. They rebound better, share the ball more, turn it over less, play faster, and shoot a dramatically higher percentage.
James' selflessness and otherworldly passing has contributed to career-best scoring rates for teammates Kyrie Irving and Channing Frye, as well as the second-highest scoring rate of Kevin Love's career.
Westbrook, meanwhile, is the first player in 55 years to enter the month of December averaging a triple-double. And he's not just scraping by, either. He's averaging 31.2 points, 10.5 rebounds, and 11.3 assists, keeping the Thunder afloat while using a preposterous 41 percent of their offensive possessions. Westbrook has recorded triple-doubles in each of his last four games, and has registered nine total on the season - as many as the rest of the league combined.
Like the Cavs without James, the Thunder have been a complete disaster when Westbrook isn't on the floor, getting outscored by 14.1 points per 100 possessions. Westbrook's one-man demolition derby has allowed them to carve out a respectable 12-8 record (good for fifth in the West) nonetheless.
Other nominees for the award were:
In the East - Irving, Love, Kemba Walker, Jimmy Butler, Hassan Whiteside, Carmelo Anthony, Kristaps Porzingis, and DeMar DeRozan.
In the West - Kevin Durant, James Harden, Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, Mike Conley, Marc Gasol, Anthony Davis, Damian Lillard, DeMarcus Cousins, and Kawhi Leonard.