Malik Monk earned a significant pay rise after he became one of the most reliable scorers for the Los Angeles Lakers in 2021-22.
Monk hardly attracted interest from NBA teams last summer, allowing the Lakers to sign him on a minimum deal. The Kentucky alum quickly turned out to be one of the steals of that offseason, averaging 13.8 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 2.9 assists, and shooting 39.1% from beyond the arc in 76 games.
Also, the 24-year-old proved his loyalty to the team that believed in him, saying he would return to L.A. for less money than other teams could give him this summer. However, the Purple and Gold decided to earmark the taxpayer mid-level exception for other needs, meaning they could only offer another minimum deal for the standout guard. That was always unlikely to satisfy Monk’s expectations, who instead has signed with the Sacramento Kings, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic:
Sources: Malik Monk is signing a two-year, $19M deal to join the Kings. https://t.co/spgbvRZspx
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) June 30, 2022
Monk showed he is a genuine, honest person who takes responsibility for his team’s results in April — saying he had trouble giving himself credit for a successful individual season because of the Lakers’ poor performance last season.
That only made him an even more attractive free-agent option, emphasizing his value as a trustworthy role player who can contribute to any team.
At almost $10 million a year, this is a nice deal with the Kings for Monk, who is just a year removed from being a minimum player.
Darvin Ham highlights competitive tone after first Summer League practice
The Lakers went through their first practice ahead of the 2022 Summer League earlier this week. New head coach Darvin Ham praised the young L.A. team for their “energy and competitiveness throughout the workout.”
The Lakers’ team in Las Vegas includes the No. 35 pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, Max Christie, Shareef O’Neal, Scotty Pippen Jr., and former Syracuse sharpshooter Cole Swider, among others.
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