West was due to make $4.6 million this season, but only $500,000 of that was guaranteed. Cleveland dealt West to Minnesota in the Ramon Sessions-Sebastian Telfair trade, and the Wolves promptly cut West to save about $4 million. West is now an unrestricted free agent.
If he does sign before the season begins, West will be ineligible for his teams' first 10 games. His suspension follows those of Gilbert Arenas and Javaris Crittenton, who both missed time in 2009-10 after a gun incident at the Wizards' locker room at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C. Arenas was ruled out of 50 games.
Stephen Jackson was suspended seven games at the start of the 2008-09 season for brandishing and firing a weapon during a skirmish outside an Indiana bar. There is precedent for teams signing a player with a suspension hanging over their head: the Grizzlies signed Darius Miles in the 2008-09 season despite Miles' pending suspension for testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs (in his case, diet pills).
West was arrested in September 2009 after being pulled over for speeding down the Capital Beltway on a three-wheel motorcycle. Authorities said West was carrying two loaded handguns, a loaded shotgun and an 8 1/2-inch Bowie knife on the motorcycle.