Kings and Lakers sign each other’s free agents; Malik Monk, Damian Jones trade places

·1 min read
Xavier Mascareñas/

The Sacramento Kings and Los Angeles Lakers took turns signing each other’s players Thursday on the first day of NBA free agency.

League sources told The Sacramento Bee the Kings agreed to terms on a two-year, $19 million contract with former Lakers guard Malik Monk shortly after free agency began at 3 p.m. Moments later, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported the Lakers had signed former Kings center Damian Jones to a two-year deal with a player option in the second year.

Monk, 24, is a 6-foot-3, 200-pound guard who came out of Kentucky as the No. 11 pick in the 2017 NBA draft. He spent four seasons with the Charlotte Hornets before signing a one-year deal with Los Angeles last summer. He averaged 13.8 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.9 assists for the Lakers last season, shooting 47.3% from the field and 39.1% from 3-point range.

Monk will reunite with former Kentucky teammate De’Aaron Fox in Sacramento. Fox and Monk helped the Wildcats go 32-5 to reach the Elite Eight at the 2017 NCAA Tournament.

Jones, 27, is a 6-11 center and six-year NBA veteran who came out of Vanderbilt as the 30th overall pick in the 2016 draft. He spent three seasons with the Golden State Warriors and one with the Atlanta Hawks before logging 14 games with the Phoenix Suns, eight games with the Lakers and 17 games with the Kings in 2020-21.

Jones appeared in 56 games for the Kings last season, including 15 starts. He averaged 8.1 points, 4.4 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 18.2 minutes per game.

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