USA Today- Veteran forward David West has agreed to a contract with the San Antonio Spurs for one year and $1.4 million, according to a person familiar with the deal.
The person spoke to USA TODAY Sports on condition of anonymity because contracts can't be signed untl the free agency moratorium ends on July 9.
West, the 34-year-old who was an All Star while with the New Orleans Hornets in 2008 and 2009, passed up on a lot of money — declining a $12.2 million player option to stay with the Indiana Pacers next season.
"At this point in my career, it's all about winning," West told WTHR.com. "And again, I don't want to be in a position where we're just fighting to make the playoffs, I want to be in a spot where we can legitimately taste the finals."
Don't get me wrong, I will never begrudge a player for choosing the opportunity to succeed on the basketball court over the opportunity to receive a higher paycheck. Especially in this day and age where most, if not all, players are more concerned about how much they make in comparison to their counterparts than the performance of their team. It's actually refreshing to see a player put his pride aside and decide that the opportunity to play for a championship is his ultimate goal. I guess my only issue with David West decision to take the veteran's minimum to go to San Antonio to play with Spurs is the ridiculous competitive advantage that it gives them. Think about that for a second. David West has been one step below an All-Star caliber player for the entirety of a decade, and there are ZERO veterans in the NBA making less than him. ZERO. Now, players have certainly taken discounts to stay with franchises before, but the 10+ MILLION dollars that West left on the table is more of a personal heist than a discount. When you look at West's track record, and then look at the contracts that players like Robin Lopez got, It becomes pretty clear that his market value was probably even higher than the 12.2 he was set to make this year.
Really David? 1.4 million to go play in San Antonio? Because their fortunes haven't been good enough without absolutely destroying the spirit of the salary cap? They already have one of the winningest coaches in NBA history doing the recruiting. An ageless wonder that is still capable of 20 and 10 on any given night. Kawhi Leonard coming out of nowhere to become a budding superstar. The apple of every team that was active in free agency's eye in LaMarcus Aldridge. The last team that needed ANOTHER starting caliber front court player at a bargain basement price is the San Antonio Spurs. Is this spoken purely out of jealousy? Maybe......fine, it's definitely spoken out of jealousy, but it's hard not to be jealous when the Spurs are collecting versatile, scoring forwards quicker than the Lakers are collecting rejection letters. I guess when you are so successful for such a long period of time things tend to break your way, and Jesus, on paper it's hard to see any team in the West avoiding the tidal wave that is the Spurs current roster.