The Indiana Pacers have parted ways with head coach Nate Bjorkgren after one season.
It was a square peg in a round hole the whole time, as the Indiana Pacers admitted they made a huge mistake in hiring as head coach Nate Bjorkgren by firing him after only one year on the job.
Indiana went 34-38 in Bjorkgren’s only year leading the Pacers. They finished in ninth place in the Eastern Conference standings. While they were able to beat the 10th-place Charlotte Hornets in the play-in tournament, the Pacers bowed out to the eighth-place Washington Wizards in their second play-in game to miss the NBA Playoffs entirely. This was a rough year for the Pacers.
One name to keep an eye on potentially succeeding Bjorkgren is former Portland Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts, who was let go after their first-round playoff exit following nine excellent years in the Rose City.
Nate Bjorkgren is out as the head coach of the Indiana Pacers
A lot of things had to compound for Bjorkgren to be one-and-done in Indianapolis, but it did happen. Indiana is the type of NBA franchise that never rebuilds and is always expected to play in the playoffs. We also have to factor in him losing the locker room, and the organization, in one year. Plus, his predecessor Nate McMillan has thrived as the Atlanta Hawks interim head coach.
So if the Pacers want a more seasoned head coach, Stotts would be a great option for them. Of course, they could become the Iniana Pacers and play next to no defense like his Portlan Trail Blazers used to. That is the biggest reason why Stotts finds himself out of a job after having been a staple in the Pacific Northwest for years. Then again, he could be the retread they are looking for.
The Pacers admitting they made a huge mistake with Bjorkgren is the first step to getting it right.