NEW YORK, April 16, 2015 – Bakersfield Jam guard Joe Jackson has been named the 2015 NBA Development League’s Most Improved Player, as voted on by the league’s 18 head coaches. The award honors the player who demonstrated the most significant improvement over the course of the 2014-15 NBA D-League season.
Jackson (6-1, 171, Memphis) played in 38 games for the Jam this season, averaging a team-high 4.8 assists. He began his professional career averaging 6.0 points, 2.0 assists and 10.6 minutes over six games in December before starting in all 10 of the team’s games in March, when he averaged 17.7 points and 7.5 assists.
“Improving is what the NBA Development League is all about and that is just what Joe did this season in Bakersfield – he got better every day,” said Malcolm Turner, NBA D-League President. “He demonstrated an impressive commitment to his craft, seizing opportunities for development in Bakersfield, and we’re so pleased that his hard work paid off.”
Jackson averaged 13.9 points, 4.9 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 24.8 minutes this season, the best of the five rookies on the Jam’s roster. He scored in double figures in 26 of 38 games, including two 30-plus point outings. Additionally, he recorded five double-doubles.
“Joe was a very talented player when he came to Bakersfield. His abilities are as high as any player in the NBA D-League,” said Bubba Burrage, Jam General Manager. “By the midway point of the season, he really began to understand the essence of his position. He improved in every facet. We are all very excited for Joe and the player he has become and for all the opportunities he has in his future.”
All-Time NBA D-League Most Improved Player Award Winners:
2014-15: Joe Jackson (Bakersfield Jam)
2013-14: Frank Gaines (Maine Red Claws)
2012-13: Cameron Jones (Santa Cruz Warriors)
2011-12: Kenny Hayes (Maine Red Claws)
2010-11: Dar Tucker (New Mexico Thunderbirds)
2009-10: Mildon Ambres (Idaho Stampede)