5 roster moves the Los Angeles Lakers must make this offseason

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 15 (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 15 (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images) /
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Los Angeles Lakers
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 03 (Photo by Meg Oliphant/Getty Images) /

Moves the Los Angeles Lakers need to make this offseason: Convince Malik Monk to re-sign

In a season full of disappointment, Malik Monk proved to be one of the few positives for the Lakers. After signing with Los Angeles on a minimum deal in free agency, the 24-year-old had the best season of his young career, and he will now test the waters as an unrestricted free agent. Given how prominent of a role he played for the Lakers, they should do everything in their power to convince the guard to stay put in LA, though that will not be an easy task.

After spending the first four seasons of his NBA career with the Charlotte Hornets, Monk had a breakout year with the Lakers, averaging a solid 13.8 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 2.9 assists in 28.1 minutes per game, all of which were new career-highs.

Though he was not outstanding on the defensive end, Monk’s game offensively made him a seamless fit alongside LA’s other stars like LeBron James and Anthony Davis, and bringing him back to play with those two next season should be among their top priorities. Whether it is off the bench or in the starting five, Monk can be a nightly contributor for this team with his prolific scoring, and the Lakers could surely use him.

The problem Los Angeles faces in retaining Monk is how much he may command in free agency. The guard certainly earned himself a raise following a great season, and given the Lakers’ lack of financial flexibility, Los Angeles will face stiff competition from opposing teams looking to bulk up their backcourt depth.

According to HoopsHype’s Michael A. Scotto, four NBA executives believe Monk could earn an annual amount of money between the taxpayer and non-taxpayer mid-level exception, which would be somewhere around $6-$10 million. That puts the Lakers in a difficult spot, and although it is not impossible to re-sign him for that price, as highlighted in this piece by Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus, it is far from easy for the purple and gold.