Malik Monk first came to Sacramento as a free agent in 2022, inking a 2-year $19.4 million deal. That deal is coming to an end after this season and the Kings will have to make a decision: Either let Monk walk and lose one of the most important players on their team or pay him.
Whether it is in Sacramento or somewhere else, Monk will get a nice pay raise on his new contract. With the Kings, he has developed into one of the top Sixth Man of the Year candidates and a player many teams could use.
He just recorded his sixth game of the season with 20 or more points, putting up 21 points, 3 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals in a futile attempt to keep the Kings’ In-Season Tournament run alive.
Even though the Kings lost, Monk’s performance was yet another reminder of what he can do and why the Kings should try their best to keep him around.
So, let’s look at three reasons the Kings should pay Malik Monk this summer.
3. Monk’s energy off the bench
So far, the Kings’ season has been rather inconsistent. In some games they look like a legit contender, other times they look disjointed and slow. The two constants they have always been able to rely on are De’Aaron Fox’s scoring ability and leadership and Monk’s energy off the bench.
Monk has the talent to be a starter in the NBA, but that is not his role with the Kings. He is their sixth man, and he has embraced that role. With 281 total points, he is fifth in points scored off the bench across the entire NBA right now.
Mostly due to Monk’s efforts, the Kings’ bench ranks 11th in points per game with 37.3, which could be the difference a lot of nights. Last season, the Kings guard was one of the finalists for the Sixth Man of the Year award, and this season should be no different.
Every time he comes into the game, he knows that he is the emotional leader on the floor. He sets the tone with his energy and a lot of times, that is exactly what the Kings need: someone to come out with a spring in his step and a grin on his face.