David West to Celtics

Boston misses mark, David West to sign with Pacers

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David West to the Boston Celtics made some sense — not a perfect fit but the best player on the free agent market the Celtics could seem to get. Rajon Rondo was going to love having one of the best pick-and-pop bigs in the game to work with.

Instead, Darren Collison is going to love having David West around.

The deal to the Celtics fell apart and the Pacers have stepped in with a two-year, $20 million deal to get West, according to Adrian Wojnarowski with Yahoo. West had spent his entire career with the New Orleans Hornets, where he and Chris Paul were as good a pick-and-pop tandem as there was in the league.

This is a blow to the Celtics, who are looking to add some scoring to a lineup of veterans that can certainly defend but need a little something more to knock off the Heat and Bulls now. West would have been a step in that direction.

On the flip side, this is a smart move by Larry Bird. Yes, West is coming off knee surgery that had him miss half the season, but this was not a guy who plays above the rim anyway. He is the stretch four the Pacers were looking for (see Dunleavy, Mike), someone that will work well with Collison and Danny Granger. Roy Hibbert will like having him as the other big, and you get to bring Tyler Hansbrough as a scorer off the bench. It’s a move that makes the Pacers better.

And at a fair price — $10 million a year for a two-time All-Star (2009 most recently) who you can count on for 19 points and 7.5 rebounds a game. Consistently. That is an upgrade for the Pacers who are not contenders but just got better at a reasonable price.

Larry Bird has as much cap space as anyone and he just sat back, waiting out the market and pounced on a good deal when it presented itself. Well played, Mr. Bird. Well played indeed.

Report: Celtics close to deal with free agent David West

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Well, Boston is going with the “penetrating point guard and shooters” theory. Apparently.

The Celtics are on the verge of signing free agent David West, tweets David Aldridge of NBA.com. This would be a three-year deal for about $27 million and likely will be a sign-and-trade where Jermaine O’Neal and others will head back to New Orleans (only to be shipped out again), according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo.

This is an interesting choice for Boston. Not sure I love it. First, you are giving a three-year deal to a guy coming off major knee surgery who missed half of last season. Second, West normally plays the power forward spot, but the Celtics have some guy who plays that spot named Kevin Garnett.

West is maybe as good a pick-and-pop big as there is in the league, which creates some opportunities with Rajon Rondo, who got 26 percent of his offense as the pick-and-roll ball handler and shot 46 percent in that role.

In addition, you can have Rondo drive the lane and have shooters in Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, KG and West around him.

Not sure this is the best fit for the Celtics, but it creates some different looks on a team that needs a few of those if it is going to return to the NBA finals.

West had played for the Hornets with Chris Paul. I’d say that West being gone hurt the Hornets chances of keeping Paul, but that ship has sailed.