Larry Bird returning to Indiana Pacers - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Larry Bird returning to Indiana Pacers

Updated:
Larry Bird Larry Bird
  • HeadlinesHeadlinesMore>>

  • A warm pattern takes over

    A warm pattern takes over

    Saturday, April 19 2014 5:44 PM EDT2014-04-19 21:44:21 GMT
    It will be a quiet and calm evening with light breezes out of the east and temperatures will fall into the mid 40's. Easter Sunrise is at 7:00am and the temperature will be around 46 degrees.More >>
    It will be a quiet and calm evening with light breezes out of the east and temperatures will fall into the mid 40's. Easter Sunrise is at 7:00am and the temperature will be around 46 degrees.More >>
  • Man with autism reported missing

    Man with autism reported missing

    Saturday, April 19 2014 5:35 PM EDT2014-04-19 21:35:56 GMT
    Jerome Parks, 23, was last seen around 3:00 p.m. at a group home in the 5100 block of Guion Road on the northwest side, according to authorities. He is described as 5'7" tall, weighing 180 pounds with black hair.More >>
    Jerome Parks, 23, was last seen around 3:00 p.m. at a group home in the 5100 block of Guion Road on the northwest side, according to authorities. He is described as 5'7" tall, weighing 180 pounds with black hair.More >>
  • Ball State football Spring Scrimmage in the books

    Ball State football Spring Scrimmage in the books

    Saturday, April 19 2014 4:49 PM EDT2014-04-19 20:49:51 GMT
    With a modified scoring system, the defense defeated the offense by a 44-22 margin for head coach Pete Lembo, who will be in his fourth season at the helm in 2014.More >>
    With a modified scoring system, the defense defeated the offense by a 44-22 margin for head coach Pete Lembo, who will be in his fourth season at the helm in 2014.More >>
INDIANAPOLIS -

Larry Bird is happy to be back with the Indiana Pacers, who announced Wednesday that Bird will return to the team as President of Basketball Operations after a year-long hiatus.

"We're on the right track here. We've got a good team and hopefully we can move it forward," he said at a news conference Thursday.

Bird says he's been watching the Pacers play all year, and he's been in contact with team management about his plans. He told reporters he took the year off due to health reasons, but now he's ready to go.

"I think my interest got real when other teams started calling me," he said. "One team in particular, I started looking at their books, their numbers, and thought, 'what am I doing?' I got an opportunity to go back home; I love Indianapolis. We got a great team. I know the system. I know what we need here to fulfill our dreams and it's really an easy choice."

Dave Calabro asked Bird what it was like watching the team play from home.

"It is tough but I can look at the game a lot differently than I would if I was sitting there in the stands watching," he said. Bird estimates he watched 90 percent of the Pacers' games this past season and "even though I was living and dying with every shot, it's a different perspective."

Bird says he's pleased with the way this young team has evolved.

"If you watch this team, they care about one another. They play together and they play as a team and that's exactly what I envisioned when I helped put this team together," he said.

According to Bird, the Pacers have no plans to trade Danny Granger. That's been the topic of much speculation leading into Thursday night's NBA draft.

His first task will be re-signing power forward David West, a key factor in the franchise's remarkable resurgence. West is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent, and the Pacers - and Bird - want him back.

Bird agreed to a multi-year deal and per team policy, no terms will be released. Donnie Walsh, who held that position the last year, will be a consultant to the franchise and Kevin Pritchard remains as the Pacers' General Manager.

Bird praised Walsh for helping to get the team to game 7 of the NBA Eastern Conference Finals.

"That shows great leadership. I've learned a lot from Donnie over the years. We knew going in we had an opportunity to do something special here and we still think we can. It's been an honor to work with Donnie and hopefully we can continue to do that. But as I say that, there's gotta be one voice, one guy leading this franchise and I came back to do that."

Bird was President of Basketball of Operations for the team from 2003 until June 27, 2012. He returns to the position Monday, July 1.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Friends, colleagues remember life of slain IMPD officer

    Friends, colleagues remember life of slain IMPD officer

    Saturday, April 19 2014 12:34 PM EDT2014-04-19 16:34:23 GMT
    Picture provided by familyPicture provided by family
    The influence of an IMPD officer killed by her ex-husband in a murder-suicide went far beyond the police department. Neighbors and those who worked with Ofc. Kimberlee Carmack are still trying to understandMore >>
    The influence of an IMPD officer killed by her ex-husband in a murder-suicide went far beyond the police department.More >>
  • Franklin mom visited by phony CPS workers

    Franklin mom visited by phony CPS workers

    Thursday, April 17 2014 8:11 AM EDT2014-04-17 12:11:37 GMT
    A Franklin woman is warning other mothers after she says two people came to her house and threatened to take her children.More >>
    A Franklin woman is warning other mothers after she says two people came to her house and threatened to take her children.More >>
  • Murder-suicide tragedy rare, but followed pattern

    Murder-suicide tragedy rare, but followed pattern

    Friday, April 18 2014 11:49 PM EDT2014-04-19 03:49:46 GMT
    The domestic violence case that ended in the murder-suicide of two IMPD officers reveals a serious danger for police officers that goes far beyond the risks they face each day in the line of duty.More >>
    The domestic violence case that ended in the murder-suicide of two IMPD officers reveals a serious danger for police officers that goes far beyond the risks they face each day in the line of duty.More >>
Powered by WorldNow