Sure, we haven’t entered the 2012-2013 season, but I am looking at next summer, and what the Pacers could do with David West. In an easy sentence, I can say that the Pacers should resign West and keep him around the team for a few more years.
When the Pacers picked up West almost two summers ago, I wasn’t sure what he could bring to the team. He was coming off an injury, and people were already saying he was on the decline. But I knew he was a good player, and he could bring at least some toughness.
What he did bring was a leadership quality that has been missing from the team since Reggie Miller left. I don’t think there’s been any sort of leader on the floor since that time. That’s a long time to go without some guy telling you what to do on and off the court.
The biggest moment Pacer fans can recall that West showed his leadership was in last year’s playoffs against Miami. The Pacers had just beat the Heat on their home floor in game two and were celebrating a bit. West was yelling at the guys to get back to the locker room and get ready for the next game. Now there’s never been a player like that for this team. I thought Danny Granger could have been that type, but he never seemed to get there.
I think West is great for Roy Hibbert as well. He can help out Roy’s game with bringing guys on his side, and then Hibbert can work the other side. West has brought a toughness to the team that was badly needed.
David West could have signed with the Boston Celtics, but he choose the Indiana Pacers. That’s a good sign for the Pacers that maybe they can look at keeping him around. It might take some more money, but West would be worth the time and effort if the Pacers want to continue this upswing they’ve started. I think he’s a vital piece and one that has to be here.