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Irving, Rubio easy choices as Rookies of Month

Cleveland Cavaliers' Kyrie Irving (2) passes out under

Cleveland Cavaliers' Kyrie Irving (2) passes out under pressure from Boston Celtics' Mickael Pietrus (28) in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Cleveland. (Jan. 31, 2012) Credit: AP

In what was presumably a very easy choice, Kyrie Irving of the Cleveland Cavaliers was named the Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month, and Ricky Rubio of the Minnesota Timberwolves was named the Western Conference Rookie of the Month.

The awards were given for the period from Dec. 25 (opening night) through Jan. 31.

Irving has put up staggering numbers on offense in his first season, averaging 18.1 points per game on 51.1 percent shooting. He has also connected on 41.1 percent of his 3-point attempts.

The Cavaliers point guard has been especially impressive lately, finishing with point totals of 32, 23 and 21 in his last three games.

Rubio, meanwhile, has made a living on highlight reels. His vision, ball handling and passing have earned him a starting role in the Minnesota back court, and he is averaging 11.4 points, 8.9 assists and 4.7 rebounds per game.

Chicago Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau and Oklahoma City Thunder coach Scott Brooks were named the East and West coaches of the month.

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