NBA Free Agents 2011: David West Signs a 2-Year Deal with Indiana

Karthik TadisinaSenior Writer IDecember 12, 2011

David West.
David West.Chris Graythen/Getty Images

One of the most underrated free agents on the market in the NBA chose his destination earlier today.

David West, who played college basketball at Xavier University (Ohio), was selected by the New Orleans Hornets in the first round of the 2003 NBA Draft.

During his eight years with the Hornets, West improved every year, as the sweet-shooting forward became an All-Star twice (in 2008 and 2009) and ultimately an integral part of the Hornets playing alongside point guard Chris Paul.

However, during the 2010-11 NBA season he suffered a torn ACL in his left knee that caused him to miss games and raise questions as to what would happen in the upcoming free agency period (West was expected to opt out of the final year of his contract).

There was a rumor that the Boston Celtics were going to sign West through a sign-and-trade with the New Orleans Hornets, who at the time were in the process of moving Chris Paul in a three-team trade to the Los Angeles Lakers until the trade was vetoed by David Stern.

The Celtics were not able to deliver and the Indiana Pacers signed West to a reported two-year deal worth close to $20 million.

This is a great move for the Pacers as they acquire a solid veteran player to play at the power forward spot alongside Roy Hibbert. The Pacers may also look to make some other moves, but that remains to be seen at this time.

The Indiana Pacers have an interesting trio of Danny Granger, Darren Collison and David West. By signing West to a shorter contract (in terms of the number of years), the Pacers also have financial flexibility in case other opportunities arise within the next couple of years.