The Hornets drafted Shooting Guard Malik Monk with the 11th Overall Pick in the NBA Draft a couple months ago. How much playing time can we expect from Malik Monk, and what is his role in the Hornets rotation for the 2017-18 season?
With the 11th Pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, the Charlotte Hornets select Malik Monk from the University of Kentucky! Fans cheered, and it all begun. This is how it all went down on June 22, 2017, in the first round of the NBA Draft.
Monk, the 6'3" Shooting Guard out of Kentucky was highly expected to be a Top 10 Draft Pick, maybe even Top Five. After he kept falling down below 8, then 9, and then 10, anticipation grew. Getting Malik Monk at the 11th Spot would surely be one of the biggest steals of the night. Then it happened. The Charlotte Hornets selected the man himself, Malik Monk. Now the question comes, how much playing time will we see from him?
SG Depth Chart
The Charlotte Hornets are deep in the Shooting Guard position this season. Let's take a look at the SG depth chart for the Hornets this season.
Starter: Nicolas Batum (28 Years Old)
Backup #1: Malik Monk (Rookie)
Backup #2: Jeremy Lamb (Age 25)
Backup #3: Dwayne Bacon (Rookie)
As you can tell from the above information, the Hornets have a lot of depth at the Shooting Guard position. A lot of depth, yes, but a lot of young depth.
Half of the Shooting Guards in the rotation are rookies from this year's draft! In addition, Jeremy Lamb is only 25 years old, and even Nic Batum is just 28! The average age at the Hornets SG position is an extremely low 23.5 years old! This shows how promising the Hornets future is, especially at Shooting Guard!
Monk Kentucky Stats
The main reason rookie Malik Monk was so appealing at the draft was because of his stellar performance at the University of Kentucky. In the 2016-17 season at Kentucky, Monk averaged a whopping 19.8 PPG, 2.5 RPG, and 2.3 APG, with a Player Efficiency Rating of 21.5.
These amazing stats contribute to the reason Monk is listed as the main backup for Nic Batum at the Shooting Guard position.
How Will Malik Monk Fit Into the Rotation
As discussed above, Malik Monk is an amazing player, and will definitely develop to complete with Nic Batum for the job of starting SG. However, knowing Steve Clifford, Monk will not start at the beginning of the season.
Seeing how he plays coming off the bench may influence Clifford's decision later in the season, but for now, he will remain the first backup to Batum. Steve Clifford has always had the "earn your minutes" mentality, and without being able to see Monk in Summer League or in the NBA yet, Clifford will most likely leave Monk as the backup.
Still expect to see Malik light it up for Hornets off the bench, and compete for that starting job.