Knicks Have Delonte West in Mind?

Via Chris Haynes
The New York Knicks and the Memphis Grizzlies are on the lookout for a backup point guard and according to a source close to the situation, both teams have inquired about the services of Delonte West.
The source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, says talks with those respective teams have ramped up recently, however they are termed as being “preliminary at this point” with no offers presented as of yet.
Knickswag Notes: 
I feel like this is old news dating back to last year. While West is still a very capable defender, I wonder why many teams seem to pass on the labeled “headache”. At this point this would not be a very smart signing. With J.R. Smith and Peace on the team already I believe that Mike Woodson has his work cut out for him with these 2 players, why add a 3rd?. A signing of a Bobby Brown or a Toure Murry gives the Knicks a younger player to work with, and potential to mold someone for the future. 
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Chicago Bulls: Delonte West Is a Low-Risk, High-Reward Free Agent Target

Delonte West would be the perfect addition to the Chicago Bulls’ second unit.

I am aware that this is a bold proclamation, but I make this decree with the absolute confidence that signing West is a low-risk, high-reward situation for both the team and the player.

The impetus behind this claim is motivated by a profile on West done by Tzvi Twersky of Slam Magazine.

A headline grabber for all the wrong reasons during his last few years as an active player, West hasn’t been on many people’s minds lately largely because he hasn’t been on any team’s roster since October of 2012.

But the portrait that Twersky’s piece paints is one of a more mature, self-aware Delonte.

He acknowledges his past transgressions without making excuses, but he is ready to prove that he is a changed man and can be a meaningful contributor. West said to Twerksy:

“When I get another chance, I’m going to put the blinders on,” vows West. “After this, I’m just breaking free of that stigma, letting stuff go, putting that stuff behind me. I’m going to show that I’ve grown, stats-wise and person-wise.”

West’s stats certainly show that he is capable, as he averaged 9.7 points and 3.7 assists over his eight seasons.

When you add his talents to the Bulls’ needs, it’s easy to see how the signing would be beneficial.

Chicago would be getting a combo guard with postseason experience who can handle the ball, shoot from the perimeter and hustle on the defensive end.

That in and of itself meets every on-court requirement for any Bulls guard.

Adding West would also give the team insurance for the oft-injured Kirk Hinrich.

Even though Hinrich and West’s roles would be similar, Hinrich proved fragile at times last season.

Hinrich’s dual guard role was crucial since then-rookie point guard Marquis Teague was still learning the ropes.

While Marquis Teague has made some strides, he still may not be ready for a suddenly increased workload should the short-staffed Bulls backcourt take a hit, and he certainly cannot play the two position.

Rookie Tony Snell, the only other true shooting guard on the roster, showed he had all the makings of a future solid contributor during the Las Vegas Summer League, but given Tom Thibodeau’s aversion to providing rookies quality minutes, a veteran like West could buy young Snell a little more time to watch and learn the game’s more subtle aspects.

And while Mike Dunleavy can play a little shooting guard, he is bound to spend most of his floor time giving Luol Deng a breather.

Obviously, West’s skill set offers a lot to the Chicago Bulls, and fortunately, the Chicago Bulls have a lot to offer West.

Overlooking his shaky past, another big factor that works against West is the amount of time he’s been away from an NBA setting.

Getting re-acclimated to the pace of professional basketball would have to be a gradual process. West would need a very positive and structured environment to help ease that transition.

The camaraderie and discipline of the Bulls locker room will give West a stable atmosphere that would make his return a positive experience, and the benefits would be professional and personal.

Look, West’s issues are still his issues. He’s always going to be bi-polar, and that will always have at least some effect on his game from time to time.

He would need teammates that are positive, supportive and willing to hold each other accountable.

The Bulls have those qualities in spades, and they would prove vital in keeping West focused as well as minimizing the chances of him relapsing back into some of his more detrimental habits.

If Chicago can look beyond West’s past behavior and inactivity, the only other factor working against him is the team’s reluctance to go deeper into the luxury tax.

That reasoning, however, wouldn’t hold up considering they cited cap issues for letting Malcolm Thomas go, but have been linked to being interested in Marcus Camby, who would cost the team more than Thomas.

While it is great to have depth at center, a gamble on Camby is just as big as a gamble on West when you consider that 39-year-old Camby played in only 24 games last season to the tune of 10 minutes, 1.8 points and 3.3 rebounds a game.

Sure, Chicago is trying to hedge their bets against Joakim Noah’s plantar fasciitis, but if Noah were to go out again, could a duo of wrong-side-of-thirty centers in Nazr Mohammed and Camby, who both averaged a combined 21 minutes per game last season, really carry the load in the middle for a full 48 minutes?

On the financial side, Camby’s $1.3 million veteran’s minimum would hit the Bulls just as hard as West’s $1.2 million, but Chicago would be getting way less bang for their buck by taking the big man over the guard.

West is barely 30, has a year of rest on his side and an eagerness to do what it takes to help a contender reach the next level.

He’s very realistic about what his pending role would be. He’s not looking to take anyone’s starting spot, just eager to help and get back to doing what he loves. Twersky quotes West as saying:

“I had tears in my eyes watching games this past year—not because I’m bipolar, but because I’m sitting at home and miss the game” West says. “When my agent calls, I’m going to be on the next flight. Not to be cocky, but some teams that are trying to win are one guard away, one guy that can make a couple great plays away from going to the Finals.

“Well, I’m right here,” he continues. “Y’all know it and I know it.”

West is that guy that could make a couple of great plays.

You can try to fault him for his previous trespasses, but you cannot deny his game plugs a lot of holes for Chicago.

Given the right coach, the right environment and the right teammates, West could make a big splash and help give a team on the verge that push to get over the hump.

Chicago’s albatross has always been a lack of multiple scorers, and that has hurt them against stronger defensive rivals like the Miami Heat.

A player of West’s caliber is bound to have more upside than that of Camby or anyone else in Chicago’s cash-strapped price range.

Granted, a West or Camby caliber player may not see the floor much, but when Thibodeau has to go deep into his bench for those clutch moments, who would you rather see: a two-steps-too-slow, 39-year-old center with very little left to give, or a still capable 30-year-old guard with a lot to prove?

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Delonte West gets married

Delonte West is still without an NBA team but congratulations are in order. he ex-NBA player announced on Twitter that he has married for the second time and is expecting a son.

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Delonte West to report to Texas D-League team

West had been a no-show since the Texas Legends acquired him on Jan. 25.

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Delonte West to join D-League team

After changing his mind about playing in the D-League earlier this season, well traveled guard Delonte West has had a change of heart and figured the way back to the NBA was through the D-League. West gambled that some team would be willing to sign him during the season after the Dallas Mavericks dumped him in the preseason. No one was willing to sign West who also had problems during his stay with the Cleveland Cavaliers and Boston Celtics. With playoff time coming up and teams willing to sign proven, low cost veterans to round out their roster to 10 day contracts, West will report to the D-League’s Texas Legends on Monday according to a report by Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski. With NBA teams uneasy about taking a risk on his past behavioral issues, free-agent guard Delonte West intends to report to the Texas Legends of the Development League on Monday, a league source told Yahoo! Sports. West, who has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, had planned to join the Legends earlier in February,

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NBA Free Agency: Why New York Knicks Should Sign Delonte West

Following the NBA trade deadline, the New York Knicks looked to the free agent market to bring in power forward Kenyon Martin, adding depth and improved defense on the bench.

But though Martin was a smart addition, he shouldn’t be the last free agent the Knicks bring in before the home stretch of the regular season.

By cutting some of the deadweight at the bottom of the roster, there should be room for one more difference-maker on the bench, and that man is Delonte West.

Like Martin, West has yet to play in the NBA this season. The Texas Legends of the D-League currently hold his rights, but he has yet to report for them and is free to sign for any NBA team that wants him.

At age 29 West is still in the prime of his career—it’s his attitude problems rather than his on-court production that have kept him out of the league this year.

Twice before the start of the season West was suspended by the Dallas Mavericks, resulting in his eventual departure days before the start of the regular season.

Clearly, West’s attitude is a major red flag, but even so, he’s a player the Knicks should seriously consider picking up. At this point, he has to know that one more locker-room spat could spell the end of his NBA career before he even reaches his 30th birthday.

West isn’t in a position with much bargaining power right now, so the Knicks could offer him a 10-day contract to see if he’s in shape and willing to buy into a team atmosphere. If not, he can be cut easily, making it a low-risk move for New York.

The payoff, however, if West does play to his potential, could be huge for the Knicks.

For the last few seasons, West has been one of the league’s best backup point guards, and he would be an upgrade and a much better fit than Pablo Prigioni.

Unlike Prigioni, West is athletic and has the ability to penetrate the way that Raymond Felton does with the starting unit. He’s also not afraid to score himself, which is something that has been a major criticism of Prigioni this season.

The last time we saw West, he had posted a career-high PER of 15.3, scoring 9.6 points per game for the Mavs on 46 percent shooting. On top of that, he also dished 3.2 assists per game. That sort of production from West coming off the bench with J.R. Smith and Amar’e Stoudemire could be lethal.

West’s versatility in being able to play both guard positions makes him a good insurance option for the Knicks if there is any injury trouble in the backcourt ahead of the playoffs. Having a player who can produce at either guard position as a starter or a bench player is a luxury the Knicks can’t afford to pass up.

The Knicks have seen already this season how much their offense relies on Felton’s health, so having a similar player in as his backup rather than the slower Prigioni and Jason Kidd is essential.

After his stints with the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Boston Celtics, West is someone with plenty of postseason experience. He’s played 58 playoff games so far in his career and has started in 27. 

West has given NBA teams plenty of reasons not to sign him this season, but at this point he’s still someone who could be a low-risk, high-reward addition to the Knicks. 

If his attitude problems can be controlled, West is a quality bench player who can lead the second unit and make the Knicks that much deeper.

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Delonte West no-shows for Mavericks’ D-League team

Delonte West hasn’t joined the Texas Legends two weeks after the team acquired his rights.

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Delonte West turns down D-League

Delonte West made news last week when it was reported that he would be playing in the D-League. West has not been able to find an NBA team to take him on, and it was thought that he was desperate enough to give the D-League a shot. Well, looks like he changed his mind, as he will not be doing that after all. Via NBA.com: Delonte West has pulled an Allen Iverson and decided that the D-League isn’t for him. Iverson, though, never actually signed a contract. He simply turned down an offer earlier this week to play for the Texas Legends, the affiliate of the Dallas Mavericks, as a means to help attract the attention of NBA teams. West did indeed sign a contract last week to play for the Legends, who are co-owned by Mavs president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson. According to a source with knowledge of West’s thinking, the troubled combo guard has decided not to play in the D-League against the advisement of his representation. West is represented by agent Dan Fegan. The source said that NBA teams

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Delonte West rejoins Mavericks, this time in D-League

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban was clear: Delonte West won’t play for his top team.

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Delonte West joins Dallas’ D-League affiliate (Yahoo! Sports)

FRISCO, Texas (AP) — Guard Delonte West was acquired by the Texas Legends on Friday, setting him up in the NBA Development League three months after Dallas released him following a pair of suspensions.

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