Delonte West Has Signed Deal With Celtics, Confirms Danny Ainge
Delonte West, a former Celtics guard, is now a current Celtics guard. According to GM Danny Ainge, Boston has brought back West, the guard that spent the first three years of his NBA career with the Celtics.
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Kelly Dwyer of Yahoo! Sports’ Ball Don’t Lie blog writes that the Celtics’ decision to sign embattled guard Delonte West can work out for both sides involved. West “needs a real team […] around him just to get his act together as a grownup,” he says, and Boston can provide that.
And on the court, West can help the Celtics, Dwyer explains:
Boston can really use him, and West can ably sop up minutes at either guard slot. He defends point guards better than he does shooting guards, but he’s quite capable of playing either position offensively, and the Cavs were a better defensive team with him on the court last year than they were with West on the pine.
There’s little risk in the West signing insofar as he’ll only earn a minimum, non-guaranteed salary. But there’s high reward, even if he “won’t put the Celtics over the top,” as Dwyer is careful to note, due to his varied skill set.
Celtics GM Danny Ainge confirmed that the team has reached an agreement with free agent guard Delonte West on Wednesday, telling ESPN Boston's Chris Forsberg, "[West] was one of the toughest guys I've ever had to trade."
Aigne added that "Paul [Pierce] and Rajon [Rondo] were especially big fans [of West] having played with him. I'm a fan of Delonte."
If it's a one-year deal, the league will pay a portion of that salary, so Boston will only be on the hook for the salary of a two-year veteran, which is $854,000.
Should he make the opening day roster, West will be ineligible for the first 10 games of the season after being suspended by the league following a guilty plea on weapons charges in the state of Maryland.
According to multiplereports, Boston has brought back West, the guard that spent the first three years of his NBA career with the Celtics (2004-07). West, a free agent, has reportedly agreed to a non-guaranteed contract.
West was drafted by Boston with the 24th overall pick in 2004. He was traded to Seattle after the 06-07 season as part of the Ray Allen deal and spent the past two-and-a-half seasons with the Cavaliers.
CelticsBlog is already saying that it's "great to have [him] back."
An important caveat regarding the acquisition of West, as Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix reminds, is that the guard has to sit out the first 10 games of the 2010-11 NBA season after he pleaded guilty to a weapons charge in August. Otherwise, Mannix says it's a "good signing" for the Celtics: "West knows the system, adds depth to the backcourt and has playoff experience. Little downside."