Coming off ACL surgery on his left knee that ended his NBA campaign early most NBA observers assumed New Orleans Hornets forward David West would stick with the status quo and would not opt out of the final year of his contract for the upcoming season. Seems West had a different train of thought as the “New Orleans Picayune” has reported that the two-time All-Star has decided to pursue Free Agency. West told reporters “We just felt like this is the best thing for me, to go forward, and I made the decision based on where I was since the knee and all those other things and I felt it was the right time for me to make a good decision.”
The Hornets can still offer a contract extension to the veteran and West said that if the offer is right he could accept it. The forward said “We’ll have to talk to them, obviously, and see where Dell (Demps, Hornets general manager) is. The Hornets have an opportunity. But I’m looking for an opportunity to win, honestly. We’ll see how things work out, and what the Hornets do to make our situation better. That’s really all it came down to. At this point in my career, I want to win, and I want to win big.”
New Orleans General Manager Demps issued a statement on West through the club. It stated “David has been a tremendous player and person for us on and off the court during his eight-years with the Hornets. We have had open communication with David this entire season about his option and knew with either decision that our intention is to pursue David so he can finish his career as a Hornet.”
West has been a key contributor for the Hornets over the past few seasons. He is also extremely close with teammate point guard Chris Paul who can opt out of his contract at the end of next season. Paul would certainly not take kindly to the Hornets losing his longtime teammate and could lead to the guard leaving New Orleans to sign with another team.