Jan 13, 2021; Sacramento, California, USA; Sacramento Kings guard Tyrese Haliburton (0) during the first quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers at Golden 1 Center. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports
Former Iowa State star Tyrese Haliburton is quickly turning heads in the NBA.
The speed at which Haliburton has made the transition to the NBA game with the Sacramento Kings is hardly a surprise to those of us who watched him up close over the last two seasons at Iowa State.
It has also made him an early favorite for the league’s Rookie of the Year award — and put him in a position to be named the Western Conference’s Rookie of the Month for January on Tuesday.
The Oshkosh, Wis. native averaged 11.2 points, 5.8 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game during the month of January while shooting 45.7 percent from the field and 39.1 percent from 3-point range.
While playing in 18 of the team’s first 20 games, Haliburton is averaging 10.7 points, 5.4 assists and 3.8 rebounds. Those numbers rank sixth, second and eighth among all rookies, respectively.
The Kings currently sit with a 9-11 record overall and 11th in the West.