Spending the second half of the season in that locker room, here are some things the Warriors players said about Monta in one-on-ones with me.
- Baron Davis, when I asked if Monta can be a star: "He's great, a real good guy for us to have around here. He's one of the young, upcoming guards. He's seeing a lot more out there on the floor and he's got confidence and year by year you're going to grow and get more confident. That's what you're seeing in him and he's got a good head on his shoulders so you'll see more and more."
- Don Nelson, when I asked him to give an assessment of Monta's progress: "I think you can see how much he means to our ball club."
- Adonal Foyle, when I asked him just to give a summary on his thoughts on Monta: "He works hard and he's always been an incredibly fast player. Given his natural skill in this offense, his emergence was almost inevitable because of the way coach is playing and he's put in the work to get the coach's confidence."
- Ike Diogu, two weeks before the trade, in talking about Monta's role: "He's one of the go-to guys because on the court he's a real calm scorer. He doesn't make mistakes like you'd expect young guards to make because he stays in his game."
- Al Harrington, in talking about Monta's late season struggles: "He'll come around. Dude's mature and trusts himself. Just give it time."
I will say this, though - Monta is a little bit of a loner on the squad .. he doesn't hang out with the guys from what I've seen and he is usually the first to leave after games. Does it matter? Probably not, but it does seem like he isn't as close with everyone else. No biggie, though.