So which Chicago Bulls star is winning Eastern Conference player of the month for December?
It's no guarantee, of course. But both DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine played at such a high level throughout the month that the franchise has a good chance of earning some hardware.
DeRozan averaged 29.3 points, 5.6 assists and 4.3 rebounds while shooting 51.5 percent overall, including 62.5 percent from 3-point range on low volume of 1 attempt per game. Still, that included a ridiculous, one-legged, game-winning 3-pointer on New Year's Eve in Indiana. DeRozan also shot 85.1 percent from the free-throw line as the Bulls won all eight games in which he played.
LaVine averaged 27.8 points, 6.1 assists and 5 rebounds while shooting 52.9 percent overall, including 47.7 percent from 3-point range on 7.2 attempts per game. He connected on 80.4 percent of his free throws while the Bulls went 7-2 in games he played. Both LaVine and DeRozan spent time in the league's health and safety protocols during the month.
The Bulls went 9-2 during December. Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Derrick Rose and Jimmy Butler are the only four players in franchise history to be so honored. Jordan earned 16 such distinctions. Pippen and Rose each earned two and Butler one.