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Juicy Fruit Rookies

NBA Rookie Rewind produced by Juicy Fruit: Most memorable moments from Western Conference stars

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NBA Rookie Rewind presented by Juicy Fruit (NBA Getty Images)

After looking at signature moments from the rookie seasons of the Eastern Conference's biggest stars, it's time to look at the Western Conference.

This time we're focusing on only six players whose seasons are still alive: Chris Paul and James Harden from the Houston Rockets, Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry from the Golden State Warriors, Jamal Murray from the Denver Nuggets and Damian Lillard from the Portland Trail Blazers.

Chris Paul, G, New Orleans Hornets

Signature moment: Winning Rookie of the Year

Paul was named Rookie of the Year for the 2005-06 season and it wasn't even close. If it weren't for Deron Williams getting one first place vote, he would've joined David Robinson and Ralph Sampson at the time as the only players in NBA history to win the award unanimously.

It's since been done three more times, by Blake Griffin, Damian Lillard and Karl-Anthony Towns.

Paul led all rookies in scoring (16.1), assists (7.8), double-doubles (21) and triple-doubles (2) that season and became only the second rookie ever to lead the league in total steals (175), joining Brevin Knight, who did it in 1997-98.

Paul also joined Robinson, Tim Duncan, Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James as the only players to be named Rookie of the Month for his conference every month of the season.

Not bad for the No. 4 pick in the draft.

Damian Lillard, G, Portland Trail Blazers

Signature moment: Game-winner against the New Orleans Hornets

Lillard has been making big shots since his rookie season.

According to NBA.com, Lillard made 36 shots in the clutch - the last five minutes of a five-point game - in his rookie season. Not only was that by far and away the most in his class, it was the 12th-most in the entire league behind the likes of Kevin Durant (38), LeBron James (42) and Kyrie Irving (49).

Lillard's most memorable clutch shot? His game-winner from an early season matchup with Anthony Davis, the No. 1 pick in Lillard's draft.

Lillard was even struggling up until that point of the game. Prior to his 3-pointer, he had missed nine of his 13 shot attempts.

Lillard would go on to win Rookie of the Year over Davis with averages of 19.0 points, 6.5 assists and 3.1 rebounds per game.

Kevin Durant, F, Seattle SuperSonics

Signature moment: Game-winner against the Atlanta Hawks

Speaking of game-winners, Durant had a huge one in his rookie season as well.

With the game tied at 123 with 0.9 seconds to play in the second overtime, Durant caught the ball at the top of the perimeter and launched a deep 3-pointer over Al Horford for the win.

Durant had missed all four of his 3-point attempts prior to that shot, but it didn't prevent him from taking the biggest shot of the game to prevent the SuperSonics from starting his rookie season 1-9.

"Al Horford was right on it, but I faded away, and fortunately it went in,'' Durant said after the game.

"I'm starting to get used to playing every other night or so, and I'm gaining confidence with my game.''

Jamal Murray, G, Denver Nuggets

Signature moment: 30 points against the New Orleans Pelicans

Murray's rookie season got off to a rough start - he missed the first 17 shots of his NBA career - but it ended on a high.

In Game 79 for the Nuggets, Murray exploded for a career-high 30 points against the Pelicans, doing so on an efficient 10-for-14 shooting from the field. He also had five assists, four rebounds and two steals in the 16-point win.

Murray then recorded a career-best 10 assists against the Dallas Mavericks a few days later and closed the season with a 27-point showing against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

That set the stage for Murray to break out in his sophomore season, in which he averaged 16.7 points per game.

James Harden, G, Oklahoma City Thunder

Signature moment: 1st Round Game 3 against the Los Angeles Lakers

After losing Games 1 and 2 of their first-round series with the Lakers, the Thunder were in need of a win at home.

Thanks in large part to Harden, they got just that.

Harden came off the bench to score 18 points, grab five rebounds and dish out three assists in Game 3. The Lakers had no answer for the Thunder in the 31 minutes he was on the court - Oklahoma City posted an offensive rating of 187 with Harden in the lineup and outscored Los Angeles by 12 points, giving him the second-best +/- on the team.

Unfortunately for Harden and the Thunder, the Lakers won two of the next three games to advance to the second round. They would, however, make the playoffs again in Harden's sophomore season and make it all the way to the Western Conference Finals.

Stephen Curry, G, Golden State Warriors

Signature moment: A career night against the Blazers

Curry put his superstar potential on full display in the final game of his rookie season.

Curry played the entire 48 minutes against the Blazers and led the Warriors to a victory with 42 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. He shot 13-for-25 from the field, 4-for-6 from the perimeter and a perfect 12-for-12 from the free throw line.

Based on Game Score, it was the most productive game by a rookie in the 2009-10 season, with Brandon Jennings' 55-point outburst against Curry and the Warriors earlier in the season being a close second.

Curry finished his rookie season averaging 17.5 points, 5.9 assists and 4.5 rebounds per game.

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