Pacers finalize contract with West

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Updated: 7/11/2013 3:02 pm

Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) - The Indiana Pacers officially announced the re-signing of two-time All-Star forward David West during a Wednesday press conference.

West played an integral role towards Indiana's run to the Central Division title and appearance in the Eastern Conference finals this past season, with the 10-year-veteran averaging 17.1 points, 7.7 rebounds and 2.9 assists over 73 games as the Pacers' starting power forward.

Previous reports indicated that West's new contract is for three years and worth $36 million.

"This is the ideal situation for myself at this stage of my career," said West. "There's really no other group that I'd rather be part of for the next few years than this group."

The 32-year-old spent his first eight NBA seasons with the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets before signing a two-year deal with the Pacers shortly after the 2011 lockout. Over 669 career games, West has averaged 16.1 points and 7.2 rebounds and made back-to-back All-Star Games with the Hornets in 2008 and 2009.

"He's done more for this franchise then he could ever imagine," Pacers president of basketball operations Larry Bird said of West. "Coming in here, establishing himself as a great player, not only on the court, but in the locker room and the city. There's special players that come through that are great players, but they don't give their heart and soul off the court or in the locker room to make other players better. We're very much appreciative of that."

Indiana also introduced free agent addition C.J. Watson, who signed a reported two-year contract to serve as the team's new backup to starting point guard George Hill.

Watson is coming off a solid season as Deron Williams' understudy with the Brooklyn Nets in which the six-year pro averaged 6.8 points and 2.0 assists over 80 games and shot 41.1 percent from 3-point range. He averaged 9.7 points and a career-best 4.1 assists while starting 25 out of 49 contests for the Chicago Bulls the previous season.

"C.J. Watson is exactly the type of player we were looking for when we said we needed to address our bench," said Bird. "He's experienced and he has been with winning teams, so he knows what it takes."

The 29-year-old Watson owns career averages of 7.6 points, 2.5 assists and a 38.2 percent 3-point percentage over 385 games.

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