The NBA awarded Joel Embiid and Jamal Murray Rookie of the Month honors in November for their respective conferences. Embiid could very well pull a Karl-Anthony Towns and win the award in the East for the rest of the season. However in the West, the award will likely be up for grabs each month as players like Brandon Ingram, Domantas Sabonis and Murray are among the best rookies in the league.
And while Embiid will reign supreme in the East, the conference has several promising youngsters. Embiid's teammate Dario Saric has been impressive. So has Milwaukee's backup guard Malcolm Brodgon.
This is all emblematic of this year's rookie class, though. Embiid may be the main star of the rookies yet there are several solid first-year players that are making an impact.
This week's rankings:
Speeding up his original timeline, the Sixers have increased Embiid's minutes limit from 24 to 28. Philadelphia planned on doing this around Christmas but since Embiid has not had any setbacks, the Sixers felt comfortable increasing his minutes sooner rather than later. And while four extra minutes may not seem like much, every single minute Embiid plays, the better he and the Sixers become. Embiid still leads all rookies in points (18.5), rebounds (7.6) and blocks (2.4).
Back at the No. 2 spot, Saric has been on a tear as of late. He's scored in double figures in Philadelphia's last three games and recorded his third double-double of the season against the Celtics, going for 21 points and 12 rebounds. Saric is averaging just 24.4 minutes a game but like Embiid, his playing time should be increasing as he's shown in 22 games that he is one of the better players on the Sixers.
With Nick Young injured, Ingram's minutes have been increased and he's been producing. Ingram scored a career-high 17 points on 8-for-16 shooting to go along with six rebounds against the Raptors. Ingram remains sixth among all rookies in points (8.0) and rebounds (3.7). His effort on the defensive end helps to keep him high up in the rankings.
The Bucks are a fun team to watch mainly because of the Greek Freak, Giannis Antetokounmpo, but pay attention to Brogdon when he comes off the bench, as he just makes very solid plays. He's averaging 2.8 assists a game (fifth among rookies) yet that number will likely increase if Brogdon keeps playing like has been in Milwaukee's last few games. He had a five-assist game against the Spurs on Monday and two four-assist games before that. Milwaukee's success this season has been mainly because of Antetokounmpo but the second unit, which includes Brogdon, has also played well.
Murray won Western Conference Rookie of the Month for November for a good reason. He can flat out score. But Murray slides down a few spots after struggling to find his shot in Denver's two losses to the Rockets and Jazz in the last week. He had a nice rebound game against the Sixers though, scoring 22 points in 23 minutes. Murray is second among all rookies in scoring, averaging 10.0 points a game.
Trying to fill the void created by Mike Conley's injury, Harrison has done a fine job as the Grizzlies' starting point guard. His shooting is a bit erratic yet he is a solid defender (1.3 steals a game) and decent playmaker. Harrison leads all rookies in assists with 3.7 a game. But perhaps more importantly, with Harrison filling in for Conley, the Grizzlies have gone 4-1. Harrison is by no means the player Conley is but he's doing a good job acting as a substitute starting point guard.
With his shooting continuing to improve, Sabonis is getting more and more comfortable as the season progresses. He made all five of his shots against the Wizards and has shot 42.9 percent from three in his last five games. Sabonis has quickly emerged as one of OKC's best options from three and is second among all rookies in three-point percentage (43.4 percent).
Similar to Sabonis, Siakim is another rookie that is starting on a playoff team in the Toronto Raptors and has been playing well. He is a fine defender and does the dirty work -- setting screens and rebounding. Siakim has shown some skills on offense as well. He is shooting 57.1 percent (averages just five shots a game), and he scored a career-high 14 points in Toronto's blowout win over the Hawks. Siakim is top five among rookies in shooting, rebounding (3.9) and blocks (0.7).
Hernangomez hardly played in New York's win over the Heat on Tuesday, which may end up being an anomaly has he's been very dependable for the Knicks so far this season. He brings energy and toughness off the bench for the Knicks. Hernangomez is averaging just 13 minutes a game yet he is third among all rookies in rebounds, averaging 4.2 a contest.
Losing their last seven games, the Hawks have been spiraling of late, and Delaney's play has also regressed a bit during this stretch. His minutes have decreased, and with that his numbers. However, Delaney is still third among all rookies in assists (3.0) and fifth in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.09), which allows him to hold onto a spot in the rankings.