The Los Angeles Lakers made a lot of headlines when they traded for superstar Russell Westbrook to team up with LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Although it was a splashy move, the signing of Malik Monk on a veteran minimum contract has turned out to be the transaction that has paid off so far.
Monk has far exceeded expectations with the Lakers up to this point in his first season in Los Angeles. He’s already won over the fanbase with his spectacular high-fly act and his ability to get hot offensively at any given moment as a spark off the bench or in the starting lineup. Still, it’s possible he could be done in L.A. after one season, as he told Jovan Buha of The Athletic.
“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t look at my future with anything,” Monk said. “I love it here. I’d love to play here again, man. But you never know what’s gonna happen with the NBA. You never know what happens. It’s a business, at the end of the day. But I’d definitely love to play here.
“But I don’t know. It’s hard to call the future.”
Monk wants to remain with the Lakers, and it’s obvious to see why considering how he’s been embraced by the fans and his teammates. He’s proven his worth this season, and that will undoubtedly draw the attention of teams around the league that regret not taking a chance on him this year.
Despite the Lakers’ struggles, Monk has done everything the team has asked for while being able to play with three superstars. Unfortunately, Rob Pelinka and company will be feeling the pinch of having three superstars on the roster, with limited cap space moving forward this summer.
Although anything is possible when it comes to NBA free agency and trades that can shake things up in the offseason, the reality is Monk will more than likely be receiving offers too good to pass on up for a bigger role elsewhere.
In 52 games this season, Monk has averaged 13.0 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game while shooting 47.1 percent from the floor and 39.9 percent from beyond the arc.