David West Has Nothing to be Ashamed of

Ray Allen called out David West for signing with the Indiana Pacers. Why? Because, Allen says the two time All-Star went for the money and listened to his ego, signing with the Indiana Pacers on a two year, $20 million contract, instead of signing for less money and a better chance, according to Ray Allen, of winning the NBA title.

Last time I checked, the Boston Celtics are a team on the decline. From NBA Champions over three years ago, as the big three grow older and older, it’s a long way to fall down. The Celtics are still contenders, but after last season’s disappointing finish to the regular season and the playoffs, losing in five games to the Miami Heat, it’s pretty natural to think their title chasing days are over.

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A good GM unwilling to break the package keeps bringing in spare parts, hoping they can maintain the rusting body. A quick glance at the Cetlics’ roster and I have a feeling this will be another year without an NBA title, not even a Conference final. Both the Heat and the Bulls are better teams, and they might not be the only ones.

Indiana made the playoffs last season for the first time since 2006, and they’re a young team on the rise. They offered West more money than what the Celtics could. West earned just over $9 million a season during the last four years for the Hornets, and despite his injury problems, he wasn’t about to take a pay cut. Averaging 19 points and 7.6 rebounds per game, why should he?

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And how much does Ray Allen get? I think it’s exactly the same number, $10 million a season. Maybe he could have gotten more if he would have chosen to leave the Celtics before re-signing, but he didn’t. If he thinks that the reasons that made him take the pay cut turn him into more honorable, well, that’s a bit delusional. LeBron James took a pay cut to win titles, and it brought him nothing but hate from everyone not living in Miami. Especially from Boston. James dealt with them, for the first time in his career, a few months later.

A player has a short career span, especially when the injuries pile up like they have for West. Besides thinking first about himself and his family, there’s something refreshing about going for the smaller team that is showing promise, and maybe even more potential than the Boston Celtics this season. It’s better to go on the elevator going up than the one going down. It’s too soon to tell if the Pacers will even out win the Celtics this year (probably not), but I think that in both short-term and long-term, David West made the right choice.