NBA Draft Profile: Malik Monk

Kentucky's Malik Monk (5) shoots while defended by Canisius' Kiefer Douse during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Sunday, Nov. 13, 2016, in Lexington, Ky. (AP Photo/James Crisp)

Here at SportzEdge, we’re breaking down some of the top prospects in this year’s NBA Draft. Which guys would you want your team to choose? Which ones should your team avoid? Are you just hate-reading this because you’re a Nets fan? (Haha, just kidding. We all know Nets fans aren’t real).

Check it out below:

Malik Monk

6-3, 200 lbs.

Kentucky

Freshman

STRENGTHS: This kid is a lights-out shooter (the best in the draft) and has already proven he’s got the ‘Clutch Gene’ as well. Monk was explosive at times this season, erupting for 47 against North Carolina in Vegas, 34 at Ole Miss, 37 against Georgia, 33 in a Saturday night showdown with Florida and 27 against Vandy in February. On a team loaded with future NBA players, Monk was the alpha-dog.

Even more impressive was his cold-blooded, near-impossible, game-tying dagger in the final seconds of the Wildcats’ Elite Eight loss to North Carolina. Anyone watching at that time knew he was going to knock down that shot before he even got the ball. Monk led Kentucky’s furious comeback from seven down in the final minute-plus, and if it weren’t for Carolina’s Luke Maye burying a buzzer-beater on the other end, he may have carried the ‘Cats to the Final Four.

WEAKNESSES:He’s only 6-3, which these days is small for a shooting guard. (Especially when compared to somebody like Jonathan Isaac, who’s an obscene 6-10). What’s worse is that he doesn’t have a great feel for running offense, and probably wouldn’t be able to transition to the point easily (averaged just 2.3 apg this year).

Monk could also struggle defending bigger guards and could spend a lot of time getting posted up on, or shot over. Like many college freshmen, he’s scrawny, and is going to need to add some muscle in order to be competitive at the next level.

BOTTOM LINE: Monk is a divine shooter and easy scorer (sorry, we had to), and even though he’s been streaky at times, he’s got what it takes to develop into a knock-down three-point threat at the next level, which will open up room for him off of the shot-fake. He’s slight, and won’t be able to attack the rim right away in the league, but that may come with more muscle and confidence. He’s got enough questions that you wonder whether or not he’ll become a sure-fire star at the next level, but this kid’s talent, confidence and moxie are exceptional enough that he should be able to carve out a long, productive career in the NBA.

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