Cleveland Cavaliers' LeBron James, Houston Rockets' James Harden named Kia Players of the Month
NEW YORK — The Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James and the Houston Rockets’ James Harden today were named the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month, respectively, for games played in October and November.
James ranked third in the NBA in scoring (28.0 ppg) and fourth in assists (8.5 apg) for the Cavaliers (15-7), who finished November on a 10-game winning streak. The 13-time All-Star shot 58.4 percent from the field, the second-highest mark of his career through 22 games of a season. James also shot 42.5 percent from three-point range, his third-best percentage through 22 games. The 6-8 forward, who also averaged 8.1 rebounds, was the only player in the league to average at least 25.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 8.0 assists. In a 130-122 victory at the Washington Wizards on Nov. 3, the four-time Kia NBA MVP became the seventh player in NBA history to reach the 29,000-point mark, as well as the youngest at 32 years and 308 days.
Harden paced the NBA in scoring (31.5 ppg), assists (9.8 apg), three-pointers made (94) and free throws made (168) for the Western Conference-leading Rockets (17-4), who produced the third-best start in franchise history. The 2016-17 Kia NBA MVP runner-up shot 45.1 percent from the field, 40.3 percent from three-point range and 86.6 percent from the free throw line. Harden scored at least 20 points in all 21 games, the longest season-opening streak since James in 2012-13 (first 33 games). On Nov. 5, the 28-year-old guard scored a career-high 56 points in a 137-110 win over the Utah Jazz.
Here are additional highlights for James and Harden in October and November:
LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers
Oct. 17 vs. Boston: Posted 29 points, 16 rebounds and nine assists in a season-opening 102-99 win over the Celtics.
Nov. 17 vs. LA Clippers: Finished with 39 points, 14 rebounds and six assists in a 118-113 overtime victory against the Clippers.
Nov. 24 vs. Charlotte: Recorded 27 points, 16 rebounds and 13 assists in a 100-99 win over the Hornets.
James Harden, Houston Rockets
Oct. 17 @ Golden State: Scored 27 points, handed out 11 assists and grabbed six rebounds in a season-opening 122-121 win over the Warriors.
Nov. 9 vs. Cleveland: Notched a triple-double with 35 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds to go with five steals in a 117-113 victory against the Cavaliers.
Nov. 16 @ Phoenix: Hit six three-pointers and made 18-of-18 from the free throw line on his way to 48 points in a 142-116 win over the Suns.
Other nominees for the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month were Boston’s Kyrie Irving, Golden State’s Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant, Indiana’s Victor Oladipo, Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo, New Orleans’ DeMarcus Cousins and Anthony Davis, New York’s Kristaps Porzingis, Portland’s Damian Lillard, San Antonio’s LaMarcus Aldridge and Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan.