Tasked to carry a Washington Wizards squad ravaged by injuries, John Wall excelled in December after a forgettable start to the season and was named the Eastern Conference’s player of the month Monday for his efforts. The two-time all-star is the first Wizards player to receive the honor since Gilbert Arenas in December 2006.
Wall, who has played through various maladies and not missed a game this season, finished eighth in the NBA in scoring (22.6 points) and sixth in steals (2.3) while leading the East in assists (11.6) for December. The 25-year-old point guard set a franchise record for most assists (187) and games with 20-plus points and 10-plus assists (10) in a month.
The former University of Kentucky star recorded a career-high 11 games with 20-plus points in a month, topped the NBA with seven straight 11-plus assist efforts, and became the first player since Chris Paul in April 2009 to average at least 22 points, 11 assists, four rebounds, and two steals in a month.
Wall began December by posting a season-high 35 points to go with 10 assists in a road win over the Cleveland Cavaliers — no other team has won in Cleveland this season — and he registered a career-high 19 assists against the Sacramento Kings on Dec. 21.
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The Wizards went 8-8 in December despite players miss a combined 73 games because of injuries or personal reasons. Oklahoma City Thunder all-stars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook shared Western Conference player of the month honors.