After sticking as an active consultant for the Indiana Pacers organization in recent years, former head coach and executive Larry Bird has been reported to no longer have an active role with the franchise.
Fieldhouse Files’ Scott Agness broke the news, dishing that current Pacers president Kevin Pritchard himself confirmed that Bird is no longer directly involved in the team’s decision-making as an active presence. This is the first time that the illustrious figure will be outside the franchise’s circle since stepping down as team president in 2017 and remaining in an advisory capacity.
Legend Larry Bird “no longer active” in the Indiana Pacers organization
Widely known as one of the greatest basketball players of all time, Larry Bird, an Indiana native, coached the Pacers from 1997 to 2000, where he led the franchise to its lone NBA Finals appearance in his final year. He left the team afterwards, but was subsequently hired as the president of basketball operations in 2003.
Bird resigned after the 2011-12 season, but returned in the following year before ultimately leaving his role as president in 2017. One of the architects of the more successful stretches in Pacers history, the team made the Eastern Conference Finals in 2013 and 2014 and qualified for the playoffs eight times during his tenure.
The magnitude of his influence after 2017 remains to be seen, but his departure signals a new change in the Circle City, which has definitely manifested in the franchise’s change in disposition recently. Finally, the Pacers are done vying for meager playoff spots and are on the early stages of an actual rebuild.
Fortunately, Bird will always be one of the most prominent names associated to Pacers basketball, and he has built a great relationship with Pritchard and current coach Rick Carlisle. His role may not be what it was, but the franchise should be assured that someone like him who knows the nooks and crannies of the game from both player and executive perspective is most likely just a call away when needed.