Cleveland Cavaliers v Toronto Raptors

Jonas Valanciunas may well be on his way to an Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month honour for April after starting the month with 53 points, 20 rebounds and 10 blocks through his first three games, but it was the big Lithuanian’s performance in March that has earned him his first such award.

The NBA announced on Friday that Valanciunas and Trail Blazers rookie (and Rookie of the Year frontrunner) Damian Lillard were named Rookies of the Month for March.

Valanciunas averaged 11.4 points, 7.3 rebounds, 1.1 blocks and only three fouls in 27 minutes per game in March while shooting 62 percent from the field and 82 per cent from the free throw line. In addition, Jonas posted a ridiculous true shooting percentage of .669 over 15 games in March and posted per-36-minute averages of 15.2 points, 9.7 rebounds and 1.5 blocks.

If JV really can finish the year out with back-to-back Rookie of the Month honours, then you have to wonder whether he’ll also be rewarded with a spot on the NBA’s All Rookie Team. Regardless, it certainly seems like the anticipation and excitement Raptors fans felt as they waited for Valanciunas to cross the pond was well worth it.

Comments (7)

  1. Very happy for Jonas, but in the article
    the stats of Jonas are nonsense. 6 assists (never even close), 26 points (career high still 24), “career high 6 rebounds” (currently at 13), etc. I think they were reading someone else’s stats and Jonas’ name.

    • The entire thing is bogus. The Raps lost 109-92 on March 31st, The Raps won on March 29th, 99-82, and the Raps lost 107-101 on March 20th vs the Bobcats.

      None of the stats are right at all, lol. I literally can’t find anything close anywhere on the schedule and box scores to any of these stats.

    • Very strange. I have a feeling these were stats for someone else. Maybe Davis? How can he be averaging, at least, 6 rebounds a game and get a career high 6 rebounds?

      • Davis? C’mon. Davis career high is 18 rebounds.
        Only top rookie I’ve found with career high of 6 rebounds is Dion Waiters. But other results doesn’t match.
        I think should be more careful with their “official releases”

  2. I think Valanciunas has a very good chance for All Rookie first team. Lillard and Davis are shoe-ins. Then there’s Waiters, who averageing 14 per game, but shooting horribly in the process. Beal, who’s came on and played really well in the second half of the season, but has missed a lot of games. Barnes and Gilchrist have both played pretty well, but I think Valanciunas has been more impressive than both.

  3. What is most impressive to me about Valanciunas is that he is excelling at a very tough position for a rookie – the natural Centre. JV has a real nose for the ball and at such a young age he is showing that the toughness and talent are there to become a dominant centre in the NBA.

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