INDIANA PACERS FRANCHISE HISTORY
Previous Franchise Names: None
Principal Owner: Herbert Simon
COO: Rick Fuson
President of Basketball Operations: Larry Bird
Head Coach: Frank Vogel
Best Season: 2003-04 (61-21, .744)
Playoff Appearances: 31
NBA Championships: 3 ABA (1969-70, 1971-73)
No team won as many ABA titles as the Indiana Pacers, who captured three American Basketball Association crowns in a four-year period from 1970-73.
The Pacers also lost in the ABA Finals in both 1969 and 1975 and were a playoff team in each of the league’s nine seasons.
Arriving in the NBA along with ABA counterparts the Denver Nuggets, New York (now Brooklyn) Nets and San Antonio Spurs in 1976, the Pacers were the last of the four to reach the postseason, now qualifying for an NBA playoff spot until 1981.
Indiana made the playoffs just twice in their first 13 NBA campaigns before making a run in the 1990s that was led by future Hall of Famer Reggie Miller and coach Larry Brown, reaching the Eastern Conference Finals in back-to-back years in 1994 and 1995.
Hall of Famer Larry Bird arrived to coach the team in 1997 and got the Pacers to their only NBA Finals berth in 2000, losing in six games to the Los Angeles Lakers.
Indiana built a contender under coach Rick Carlisle in the early 21st century, but a team led by Jermaine O’Neal and Metta World Peace (then known as Ron Artest), along with an aging Miller, was undone by an ugly incident at the Palace of Auburn Hills in 2004 that resulted in a 73-game suspension for Artest and lengthy bans for O’Neal and Stephen Jackson.
Paul George leads the current Pacers incarnation and helped Indiana to back-to-back conference finals appearances in 2013 and 2014, playoff runs cut short each year by the Miami Heat.
Slick Leonard, a former NBA All-Star and Indiana University legend, took over as coach of the Pacers mine games into the 1968-69 season and remained on the job through 1979-80, with a regular-season record of 573-534 (387-270 in the ABA) and a postseason mark of 69-47 (all in the ABA).
Indiana Pacers Career Leaders (as of 3/9/2016)
- Games, Reggie Miller, 1389
- Points, Reggie Miller, 25279
- Rebounds, Mel Daniels, 7643
- Assists, Reggie Miller, 4141
- Steals, Reggie Miller, 1505
- Blocks, Jermaine O’Neal, 1245
Indiana Pacers Retired Numbers
Indiana Pacers Official Links
Indiana Pacers Beat Writers
Candace Buckner, Indianapolis Star, @candacedbuckner
Mike Marot, Associated Press
Related Indiana Pacers Blogs and Links
Indiana Pacers Logo History, courtesy of Chris Creamer’s Sportslogos.net
Salary Page: Indiana Pacers Salaries at Spotrac
FanSided Indiana Pacers: 8 Points, 9 Seconds
SB Nation Indiana Pacers: Indy Cornrows
HoopsHabit Indiana Pacers Archive: Indiana Pacers
Bleacher Report Indiana Pacers Team Stream: Indiana Pacers
RealGM Indiana Pacers Page: Indiana Pacers
Stats and retired number information courtesy of Basketball-Reference.com and NBA.com