Jaime Jaquez Jr. becomes fifth different Heat player to be named East’s Rookie of the Month

Miami Heat first-round pick Jaime Jaquez Jr. has established himself as one of the NBA’s top rookies.

The NBA provided further proof of that on Monday afternoon, announcing that Jaquez has been selected as the Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month for games played in October and November.

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Jaquez, who was taken by the Heat with the 18th overall pick in this year’s draft following a four-year college career at UCLA, is the first Heat rookie to earn the honor since Kendrick Nunn was named the East Rookie of the Month three separate times during the 2019-20 season.

Jaquez is the fifth different Heat player in franchise history to get the rookie award, joining a list that also includes Caron Butler (four times), Michael Beasley (one time), Josh Richardson (one time) and Nunn (three times).

Oklahoma City’s Chet Holmgren was named the Western Conference Rookie of the Month for games played in in October and November.

Jaquez, 22, averaged 12 points, 3.9 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.1 steals per game while shooting 52.9 percent from the field, 39 percent from three-point range and 87.5 percent from the foul line in 19 games (four starts) in October and November.

The Heat has played just one game in December up to this point. Jaquez recorded 11 points on 4-of-9 shooting from the field, 1-of-2 shooting on threes and 2-of-5 shooting from the foul line, three rebounds, three assists and two steals in 29 minutes in Saturday’s home loss to the Indiana Pacers.

Among NBA rookies this season, Jaquez ranks fifth in points per game (12), eighth in rebounds per game (3.9), eighth in assists per game (2.6), second in steals per game (1.1) and sixth in minutes per game (26.7).

Jaquez and Holmgren are the only two rookies in the league who entered Monday averaging double-digit points while shooting better than 50 percent from the field this season. No Heat rookie has finished their first NBA season with those marks.

Jaquez has also already logged a team-high 171 fourth-quarter minutes this season, which is the second-most among all NBA rookies behind only Washington’s Bilal Coulibaly. Jaquez has played the entire fourth quarter in nine games this season, which is the second-most among Heat players behind only Richardson.

The Heat (11-9) returns to practice Tuesday before continuing its season with a short one-game trip to Toronto for a matchup against the Raptors on Wednesday night.