If LeBron James texts you to ask a yes or no question, it’s pretty hard to say no.
I mean, I personally don’t know that to be true but I can only assume. And part of that assumption comes from Malik Monk’s response to a LeBron text as well.
This summer, as Monk was debating his options and where he would sign, a text from LeBron helped seal the deal. In a recent piece by Jovan Buha of The Athletic, Monk detailed the process behind him choosing the Lakers in free agency last offseason.
The Lakers remained the frontrunners because their pitch was more convincing. Monk, refusing to accept his circumstances, contemplated waiting for more suitors. But then Lakers head coach Frank Vogel called. And finally, the most important recruiter of all reached out via text: James.
“I told LeBron I wanted to wait to see my options the next day,” Monk said. “S---, I didn’t have any options. Called the Lakers right back that second day and I said, ‘I’m coming.’”
In the piece, Monk reveals that only two teams reached out to him: the Lakers and the Mavericks. The latter of those makes sense when you consider that the Lakers had long sought after Monk and Dallas is now coached by former Lakers assistant Jason Kidd.
The Mavs, though, do not have a LeBron James on their roster that can text Monk to get the deal over the line. And ultimately that helped seal the deal for the Lakers.
That ended a multi-year pursuit of Monk by the Lakers, who had attempted to trade for Monk in each of the last two seasons. The Lakers belief in acquiring him has paid off as Monk has proven to be a perfect complement to James on the court.
The pairing has played the sixth-most minutes together this season, sporting a net rating of +1.2 in 665 minutes. Only Russell Westbrook has played more minutes alongside James than Monk this season and only Carmelo Anthony, Austin Reaves and Stanley Johnson have better net ratings alongside him.
Even if James didn’t expect this type of production from Monk, he did see him as a player that could positively impact the team. And all it took was one text to seal the deal.