Whether it is a good deal remains to be seen, but for now Pacers nation is rejoicing the reported signing of marquee free agent and new starting power forward David West from the New Orleans Hornets, after a reported deal with the Celtics fell through. The deal is said to be $20 million over 2 years, which might seem like a gamble considering West’s recent ACL surgery, but all things considered, is a relatively low risk signing in the scheme of things.
The 6’9″ West averaged 18.9 and 7.6 rebounds per game last season and will provide a much needed offensive boost to the Pacers, who often struggled to find offense down the stretch, especially when Danny Granger wasn’t on his game. Now they not only have a second consistent scorer and genuine post up presence (sorry Roy and Tyler), they also have a pick-and-roll expert who has once worked with Darren Collison on the Hornets. Hopefully this will also amp up Collison’s game in the upcoming season as he learns to be more of a passing point guard. It can also potentially improve Hansbrough’s game as he now shifts to the back-up PF position where most believe he will thrive as an energy guy off the bench. Having a low post scorer can also potentially improve Hibbert’s game (Hibbert is an underrated passer in the post) and get him to concentrate more on the boards. And finally, it will be great for Granger not having the pressure of carrying the offensive load night in night out.
The Pacers aren’t quite done dealing yet, as reports indicate that they are still after OJ Mayo, a wildcard SG from the Memphis Grizzlies. You might remember that the Pacers almost sent Josh McRoberts over for Mayo at the end of last season but the deal collapsed at the last minute. Mayo is a guy who can flat out score and more importantly can create his own shot, something few Pacers can do at the moment. The Pacers apparently were after either Mayo or Jamal Crawford from the Hawks, but since Crawford is close to signing with the Knicks, they have turned their attentions to Mayo.
Other reports also indicate that the Pacers have not given up on Carl Landry and Andrei Kirilenko yet either.
Here is a table on what the Pacers have been doing this offseason and how the roster might look like next season:
(likely to leave)
|Hot Seat?||Potential Signing?|
|PG/SG||AJ Price||George Hill||Lance Stephenson|
|SG/SF||Paul George||Mike Dunleavy Jr||Dahntay Jones
|SF/PF||Danny Granger||James Posey||Andrei Kirilenko|