July 15, 2024

Malik Monk to sign 4-year deal to remain with Kings: Sources

By Anthony Slater, Sam Amick and Mark Puleo

Malik Monk will be staying in Sacramento. The high-scoring reserve is expected to sign a new four-year contract worth $78 million, league sources confirmed, the maximum allowable contract the Kings could offer him, incentivized with a player option on the final season.

Here are the per-year dollar amounts on his new deal.

  • 2024-25- $17.4 million
  • 2025-26- $18.8 million
  • 2026-27- $20.2 million
  • 2027-28- $21.6 million (player option)

Monk was the runner-up for the 2024 Sixth Man of the Year Award after averaging a career-high 15.4 points per game in 72 contests off the bench for Sacramento. His energy off the bench was crucial for the Kings, who went 46-39 and fell in the Play-In Tournament.

Monk also thrived as a distributor in 2023-24, averaging a career-high 5.1 assists per game and ranking among the top of the league in assists per drive.

After being drafted by Charlotte in 2017 and then spending one year with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2021-22, Monk arrived in Sacramento needing a fresh start in 2022 and immediately found success as a bench sparkplug. He finished fifth in Sixth Man of the Year voting and 11th in Most Improved Player voting in 2022-23.

Sacramento signed Monk to a two-year, $19.4 million contract in 2022, he contract he quickly outplayed.

After helping the Kings snap their long playoff drought in 2023, Monk’s season in 2024 ended on a sour note as he missed the final month of the season, including the team’s Play-In Tournament games, with a sprained right MCL.

“I can go somewhere else with a lot more money and be in a worse situation,” Monk said after the season when asked about potentially cashing in for a big payday. “So you never know. I’ve got a great agent who is going to do his job. I think my job is done, I did what I needed to do this year. I think it’s going to play out the right way.”

While he was managing emotions and seemingly undecided on his future, he answered directly when asked if he’d want to be in a Kings jersey next season.

“Definitely,” Monk said without much hesitation.

Why did this get done so quickly?

The new CBA rules allowed the Kings and Monk to commence negotiations the day after the finals. It really was a simple presentation from the Sacramento side. Because of some financial restrictions, they were only able to offer him a maximum of four years and $78 million. They incentivized it with a player option on the final season, allowing Monk to dip back into free agency a bit earlier if his career trajectory continues to trend upward.

The Kings put that max offer on the table and Monk — whose side has clearly surveyed the free agency landscape — decided it was enough to lure him back to the Kings, a place he blossomed and wanted to remain. — Anthony Slater, NBA senior writer

What does this mean for the Kings?

They bring back one of the league’s most productive bench players, squarely in his prime (26) and keep together what can essentially be considered the core four members of their team: De’Aaron Fox, Domantas Sabonis, Keegan Murray and Monk, who was terrific in the playoffs two seasons ago and might’ve been enough to edge them back into the playoffs in April had he not missed the final stretch of the season with a sprained MCL. The Kings have the 13th pick in next week’s draft and general manager Monte McNair has expressed an appetite to possibly use it in a trade if they can upgrade the roster. — Slater

What does this mean for the free agent market?

It is always beneficial for the rest of the incoming free agents when a player retreats to his own team this early in the process. That keeps more cap space and possible landing spots available. Monk didn’t go to Orlando or Detroit or San Antonio or anywhere else, soaking up available cap space.

So this leaves open possible landing spots for similar players in his realm like Klay Thompson, D’Angelo Russell and James Harden. — Slater

Required reading

(Photo: Justin Ford / Getty Images)