Two years ago, many teams were a little skeptical about signing ex-Hornets power forward David West, who tore his ACL towards the end of the 2011 season.
After opting out of his contract with New Orleans, the two main teams that remained interested in the veteran were the Indiana Pacers and Boston Celtics. The Celtics reportedly offered West a three-year deal, while Indiana gave him a two-year, $20 million offer. West opted to sign with Indy, as he was unsure of where Boston’s future was heading.
Though the Celtics ended up being one game away from the NBA Finals in 2012, West should now be glad that he signed with Indiana instead, as both franchises look like they’re in completely different directions now. The Celtics were knocked out of the first round, leaving the futures of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett in a questionable state, while the Pacers remain close with the Heat in this year’s Eastern Conference Finals.
Making it to the Finals or not this season, West will be a free agent this summer.
“Yeah,” West said an interview with Fox Sports Florida after his team fell behind 3-2 in the Eastern Conference finals. “I love what we’ve been able to accomplish in the lockout season (of 2011-12) and this full season. And I just pretty much love how this group has grown together since I’ve been there.”
West signed a two-year, $20-million deal with the Pacers before last season. He was asked if he’s had any talks yet with Indiana officials about re-signing.
“I don’t think we can officially,” said West of the free agency period starting July 1. “But these guys know that I’m with them [for the future].”
Regardless, after his exceptional performance these past two years, many teams will be looking to make a push for the 32-year-old in free agency. West, who averaged 17.1 points this season, could be lured in by several teams who will be in need of help at the four.
According to The Sporting News, those teams are the Atlanta Hawks, Memphis Grizzlies and Los Angeles Clippers.
I guess that makes sense.
Atlanta will be in need of power forward help this off-season as Josh Smith most likely will be playing in a different uniform next season. The Grizzlies have been rumored to move Zach Randolph this offseason, especially after his extremely poor performance in the Western Conference Finals against the San Antonio Spurs. The Clippers deal would be interesting, as they could bring West in as bench role or it could indicate they may be trading someone.
Nonetheless, all signs have pointed to West returning to the Pacers for another season.
Topics: Free Agency 2013