In a month notable for its turnarounds, one player made the biggest impact on his team's favorable fortunes, Luca Vildoza of Crvena Zvezda Meridianbet Belgrade, who is Euroleague Basketball's choice as MVP for December in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague.
Vildoza finished first or second in performance index rating for Zvezda in every full game he played last month, when his team went 4-2 and rejoined the playoffs race, where it is tied for eighth place with an 8-8 record. Despite leaving December's final game with an injury after a few minutes, Vildoza finished with an average PIR of 17.7 and 15.8 points per game, both team highs. Over his five full games before getting injured, Vildoza ranked among the top three players in the league in both PIR and scoring for the month. His injury, a hamstring strain, will likely sideline Vildoza for two weeks or more.
The MVP of the Month award is now in its 18th season. The winner is named by Euroleague Basketball based on his and his team's performance during the month in question. Vildoza, 27, becomes just the second Zvezda player to be named MVP of the Month, after teammate Ognjen Kuzmic, the January 2017 winner. Vildoza is now the third player from Argentina so honored, after Luis Scola in December 2006 with Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz and Facundo Campazzo in April 2019 with Real Madrid.