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Kings sign Malik Monk

It sounds like Malik Monk will likely sign with the Kings when NBA free agency opens, barring an unforeseen change.

Valparaiso v Kentucky Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Malik Monk has officially reached an agreement to sign with the Sacramento Kings, according to multiple reports. Monk will rejoin his college teammate De’Aaron Fox in Sacramento on a two-year, $19M contract.

This move follows 12 hours of increasing rumblings that Monk would leave the Los Angeles Lakers after a career-best season in 2021-22.

Monk, who averaged career-highs of 13.8 points and 2.9 assists on 47.3% shooting over the course of the 2021-22 campaign in Los Angeles, was first linked to the Kings by Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report during an appearance on Spotify Live with veteran NBA insider Marc Stein (emphasis mine):

“When Monk told (The Athletic) that he was willing to go back to the Lakers for under the mid-level, I was like ‘huh?’ Because I had heard that he basically could go back to the Lakers for the mid-level right now, if he wanted to. It seems like there is very mutual interest there. But he definitely is looking for more, a bit more, the numbers I’ve heard are between $8 million and $12 million, which the taxpayer is at $6 (million). The one team I heard — and I’m not saying this is a done deal or it’s gonna happen — (and) it’s a very different situation than L.A., but I know that there’s mutual interest, the one team that I’ve heard to look out for, for him not to go to the Lakers, is the Sacramento Kings.”

Monk, 24, doesn’t do much to address Sacramento’s horrific defense, but he does help their lack of team shooting in a major way. Monk is at just 35.5% from three in his career, but has hovered around 40% in each of the last two seasons.

Looking at the roster currently, it seems that Monk will slot next to his college buddy at shooting guard, forming one of the most athletic backcourts in the league.

In his two seasons as general manager, Monk is comfortably the best player that Monte McNair has signed.

Unfortunately for the rest of Sacramento’s free agency, Monk received most of the team’s non-taxpayer Mid-Level-Exception, meaning Sacramento is financially limited in improving its roster via free agency.