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Magic's Payton, Wolves' Wiggins named Kia Rookies of the Month

POSTED: Feb 4, 2015 8:00 PM ET

Official release

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— The Orlando Magic's Elfrid Payton and the Minnesota Timberwolves' Andrew Wiggins on Wednesday were named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month, respectively, for games played in January.

Payton paced all rookies in assists (6.9 apg) and steals (1.87 spg), and finished third in scoring (10.7 ppg). He led or tied for the team lead in assists 13 times and scored in double figures eight times in 15 games. Payton had career highs of 22 points and 12 assists on Jan. 16 against the Memphis Grizzlies.

Wiggins, who won the West award for the third consecutive month, led all rookies in scoring (19.8 ppg) and minutes (38.4 mpg) in January. He placed second among rookies in field goal percentage (.471) and was fourth in rebounds (4.6 rpg) and steals (1.41 spg). Wiggins poured in a career-high 33 points -- 23 in the first half -- on Jan. 31 against the Cleveland Cavaliers, his 16th 20-plus effort of the season.

Here is a recap of the month for Payton and Wiggins:

Elfrid Payton, Orlando Magic

Jan. 2 vs. Brooklyn: Contributed 16 points, 10 assists, a career-high-tying nine rebounds and three steals in a 100-98 loss to the Nets.

Jan. 16 vs. Memphis: Finished with career highs of 22 points and 12 assists in a 106-96 loss to the Grizzlies.

Jan. 29 vs. Milwaukee: Scored 15 points and had six assists in a 115-100 loss to the Bucks.

Andrew Wiggins, Minnesota Timberwolves

Jan. 1 vs. Sacramento: Recorded 27 points, nine rebounds and four steals in a 110-107 loss to the Kings.

Jan. 17 @ Denver: Scored 31 points and contributed nine rebounds and four assists in a 113-105 victory over the Nuggets.

Jan. 31 vs. Cleveland: Scored a career-high 33 points and added four steals in a 106-90 loss to the Cavaliers.

Other nominees for the Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month were Denver's Jusuf Nurkic, Minnesota's Zach LaVine, New York's Langston Galloway, 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.