Charlotte Hornets allow Malik Monk to walk into unrestricted free agency

Zack Geogheganabout 2 months


Aritcle written by:Zack GeogheganZack Geoghegan


Orlando Magic v Charlotte Hornets
<small>(Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)<small>
[caption id="attachment_361510" align="aligncenter" width="2560"] (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)[/caption] The Hornets are letting the Malik Monk experience come to an end. On Sunday, the Charlotte Hornets announced that it will not extend shooting guard Malik Monk a qualifying offer, which will make the former Kentucky Wildcat an unrestricted free agent. Monk is now free to sign with any team he would like. During his four NBA seasons, all with the Hornets, Monk put together career averages of 9.1 points per game on 40.3 percent shooting from the floor. It wasn't until his third season that Monk, who was drafted No. 11 overall in the 2017 NBA Draft, finally began to showcase the shooting prowess that he did in his lone season at Kentucky. This past season in 2020-21, Monk was able to string together his most impressive stretch as a professional, posting averages of 11.7 points, 2.4 rebounds, and 2.1 assists per outing on shooting splits of 43.4/40.1/81.9 in 42 games off the bench. Unfortunately, that's about where the good news ends with Monk's time in Charlotte. A poorly-timed failed drug test in February 2020, which violated the NBA's substance abuse policy, suspended him until mid-June of the same year. Then he tested positive for COVID-19 in December 2020 and was slowly incorporated into the start of the 2020-21 season. Monk eventually publicly voiced his frustrations over a lack of playing time in January and, to top it all off, revealed that his grandmother passed away due to COVID-19 the same week he contracted the virus. But despite all of that, on the hardwood, Monk was playing the best basketball of his life until the Hornets season began to crumble due to injuries. Charlotte had a decision on whether or not to re-sign Monk for a second contract and they ultimately decided to go another direction. In reality, the Hornets made this move when the franchise selected another shooting guard, James Bouknight, in Thursday night's 2021 NBA Draft. It had come time for both sides to move on from one another. Now, Monk will search for a fresh start, perhaps the best move for his career at this stage. He has shown that he can score at an NBA level and is quickly molding himself into a much-improved playmaker. There was a stretch of 27 games this past season where Monk averaged 14.6 points on 46.5 percent shooting from the floor and 41.8 percent from deep, including four games with at least 25 points. At least one NBA team will take a chance on him being able to do that throughout a full season. Remember, Monk is only 23 years old.

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