Indiana Pacers: 3 under-the-radar coaching candidates after Nate Bjorkgren’s firing

Becky Hammon - Credit: Daniel Dunn-USA TODAY Sports
Becky Hammon - Credit: Daniel Dunn-USA TODAY Sports /
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Following a month of speculation and guesswork, the Indiana Pacers finally dropped the hammer yesterday, firing rookie head coach Nate Bjorkgren after the team missed the playoffs for the first time in six years while getting entangled in an uncharacteristic bout with locker room issues and turmoil in the coaching staff.

The news came as no surprise to many, especially with the Pacers sharply underachieving in the previous season. Overall, the Blue and Gold finished with a mediocre 34-38 record, good for 9th in the East, which then led to an eventful ouster in the play-in tournament. In comparison, while playoff success was still elusive, last year’ team finished 45-28—an impressive tally good for 4th in the conference.

The coaching hunt is on full throttle once more for the Indiana Pacers

What doomed Nate Bjorkgren in this turbulent season was his inability to lay down a seamless communication string on the team and his abrasive human management. His on-court miscues, meanwhile, aggravated a team attack that was not conducive to the team’s personnel.

Clearly, the Indiana Pacers are resolute on remaining competitive, which is indeed viable and realistic assuming they have a healthy roster next season. After all, they are just a season away from finishing in the upper echelon in the East in 2020. Roster decisions are still secondary this time, especially with the coaching vacancy atop the priority list as of writing.

Popular names already crowd the list of potential candidates for the Pacers head coaching job. However, the pool can always be deeper, especially with the league’s wide crest of tremendous strategists on the sidelines. Here are three under-the-radar coaching candidates for the Indiana Pacers after Bjorkgren’s exit.