Friday, September 3, 2010

West Back with Celtics

http://www.espn.go.com/media/other/2006/0213/photo/g_delonte_195.jpg


Danny Ainge acknowledged that Delonte West's trade was one of the hardest decisions he had to take as president of basketball operations in Boston, but three years later he hopes that West, as the players by those who change in 2008, could help give the team a championship.

Ainge confirmed yesterday that the Celtics have signed with West, adding to free agent guard 6'4 feet for an impressive season for Boston.

The Boston Herald was the means which first reported the agreement.

"He was one of the boys more difficult to change," said Ainge, who sent West, Wally Szczerbiak, the No. 5 pick in the 2007 draft (Jeff Green), and a second-round pick, 2008 (Trent Plaisted) to Seattle in exchange for Ray Allen and the No. 32 pick in the 2007 draft (Glen Davis).

"I would do again, of course, but we liked Delonte when he was here. Although we were aware of the problems he had, we think Delonte is a better place today. It was not perfect, but all However, we have always liked as a player. "

The Celtics selected West as the total 24 pick in the NBA draft in 2004, in the middle of three first-round picks that included Al Jefferson (fifteenth overall pick) and Tony Allen (25 total). He spent three seasons in Boston, with a career average of 12.2 points along with 4.4 assists and 3 rebounds per game during the 2006-07 season (opening 47 of the 69 games he played).

West spent the last two seasons - campaigns marred by problems off the field - with the Cavaliers, keeping their best efforts for the playoffs from 2008 to 1909 before losing his starting job last year. Cleveland sent the Minnesota Timberwolves West last month and was cut shortly thereafter.

Ainge said that Boston had to West on his radar from the moment he was traded from Cleveland. While Ainge declined to comment on the terms of the agreement or if secured, is likely to find the lowest West veteran - most Boston can offer - that for a player in his sixth year is a little more $ 1 million. If this is a one-year contract, the league pays a portion of that salary, so Boston will only be on the hook for the salary of a veteran of two years, which would be $ 854.000.

If left in the opening day roster, West will not be eligible for the first ten games of the regular season due to suspension levied by the league after a guilty plea on charges of carrying arms in the state of Maryland in July. Would be available for the game number 11 of the Celtics, on November 17 when they visit the Washington Wizards.

Ainge acknowledged the burden that is accompanied by West, but said he believes he is returning to a positive situation with a team that will welcome you with open arms.

"There is a familiarity with the roster and a familiarity with the players," Ainge said. "Paul [Pierce] and Rajon [Rondo], especially, were big fans of playing with him. I am a fan of Delonte."

Ainge said the team spent much time trying to understand the mental health of West (who suffers from bipolar disorder) and the care required to help. Said the team is comfortable with the idea of working with the player to keep on track.

West provides a much-needed depth on the perimeter. While Ainge does not project a clearly defined role for West, preferring to let it be decided at the training camp, is likely to compete with Von Wafer West for first place in the reserve behind Ray Allen.

For his career, West, 6.4 ft., has averaged 10 points, 3.7 assists and 3.1 rebounds per game. Neither Ainge nor the coach, Doc Rivers, nor the captain, Pierce, were shy in the offseason to note that the Celtics wanted another sniper. West has a total mark of 44.6 percent from the field in her career and, while his three-point shot is average at best, have a good game from mid-range that should fit well coming off the bench for Boston.

West can also distribute the ball, adding depth to a position of point guard that he needed people behind Rondo last season.

Ainge also refused to close the door to more off-season moves, though this has already been a shower of signings, and suggested that it will evaluate once the season really is over.

Rumors resounded on all sides this week saying that West was in the Boston area. The Herald reported Tuesday in its gossip column, "Inside Track" that West was found searching for apartments in Waltham (site of the Boston practice facility), while an informant told Red's Army, one of the popular blog Celtics, who had been in West New England Baptist Hospital for a checkup before signing on Tuesday.


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