Should Indiana Pacers Bring David West Back Next Year, and for How Much?

Ryan Reed@@rareedBRCorrespondent IIDecember 28, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 27:  David West #21 of the Indiana Pacers celebrates a basket to take a 79-77 lead over the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on November 27, 2012 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  The Pacers won 79-77.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

David West has been the Indiana Pacers' most consistent player thus far this season, averaging 17.4 points, 8.1 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game, while filling in some of the offensive void left with the injury to Danny Granger.

West is also going to be a free agent after this season, priming himself for another large contract with his impressive play this year.

Still, the Pacers have a difficult decision to make about West when it comes to how much money they are willing to offer.

More importantly, the Pacers need to decide how many years they are willing to offer David, especially since he is already 32 years old and has had a major knee surgery in the latter part of his career.

So, what should the Indiana Pacers be willing to offer David West this coming summer?

The Pacers should offer West a maximum of four years and $40 million, although the money could go higher if he is willing to accept a two or three-year contract.

The logic behind this contract is simple. David West is a risky player to sign for a four-year deal, given his age and injury history, but he is also worth at least $10 million per year.

If he was to sign for two or three years, the team could offer $12 million, similar to the contract given to Kevin Garnett during the past offseason. Interestingly enough, West has put up numbers similar to Garnett's during this season yet is several years younger.

At four years and $40 million, however, West could be considered a steal, especially compared to the likes of Carlos Boozer and Danilo Gallinari (who has a similar contract).

Still, any more than $40 million may be too risky of an amount to spend on a player who is a year removed from a season in which he averaged 12.8 points and 6.6 rebounds per game after a major knee injury.

For two or three years, however, it would be worth the risk to offer West a contract worth around $12 million per year. Even with that salary, he would be making less than both Roy Hibbert and Danny Granger.

David West has certainly earned another big contract with his play this season. Still, Indiana must be cautious when it comes to offering a major four-year deal to West given his age and injury history.

A four-year contract worth $40 million or a two to three-year deal worth closer to $12 million per year would be well worth the risk presented of re-signing David West.

All Stats are up to date as of 12/27/12