More plaudits are earned by the Sioux Falls Skyforce for rampaging through their December schedule.

According to a release from the League on Tuesday, Sioux Falls Skyforce head coach Dan Craig has been named the NBA Development League Coach of the Month for games played in December. This award is freshly minted by the NBADL this season to reward coaches for their efforts in developing players and managing their teams.

Craig guided Sioux Falls to a 9-1 record for the month, as the Skyforce improved to 14-3 on the season, tops in the NBA D-League. Sioux Falls held opponents to less than 50 percent shooting in all 10 games this month, and six of the nine Skyforce wins came by 10 or more points. Craig oversaw the emergence of DeAndre Liggins, who registered triple-doubles in victories over the Fort Wayne Mad Ants on December 18 and 27.

Craig is in his first season as head coach for Sioux Falls, but has been a part of the Miami Heat organization for 13 seasons. Craig was the head coach of Miami’s NBA Summer League teams the past three years. Last season, he served as Assistant Coach/ Director of Player Development for the Heat.

Prior to the season, Craig’s goals were clear about what his team would be like once assembled. “It’s going to be a blue-collar team that prides itself on winning games defensively. We want to be the most prepared, best-conditioned, hardest working basketball team.” Through the first 17 games that vision has certainly been fulfilled.

Even beyond the scope of the D-League, Craig has made an impact. In an interview with Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel, Miami Heat forward Jarnell Stokes who has been assigned multiple times to Sioux Falls gives a peek into how Craig prepares the Skyforce. “He has us motivated every game. We watched Ray Lewis highlights some games just to keep us motivated. We really compete and Coach Craig has done a great job of just keeping me in tune with what’s going on in Miami.”

Wise Guys in Vegas Put Three Teams as Super Bowl Co-Favorites

Stokes and guard Josh Richardson will once again be under the watchful eye of Craig and Company. The Heat announced that the two will be joining the Skyforce during the NBADL Showcase.

The Player of the Month is Jordan Mickey of the Maine Red Claws. He is on assignment from the Boston Celtics and has been a dominant force through the season’s second month.