7:17am: The Pacers have reached an agreement on a contract extension with head coach Nate McMillan, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Monetary terms of the new deal aren’t yet known, but McMillan previously had one year left on his contract. According to Wojnarowski, the two sides finalized the new agreement in recent days.
It was just last week that rumors surfaced about McMillan’s job security, with ESPN analysts Jeff Van Gundy and Zach Lowe noting on a podcast that they had heard whispers about the veteran head coach being on the hot seat. At the time, Lowe stressed that the Pacers had been consistent in denying those rumors — based on today’s news, it seems the team was serious about sticking with McMillan.
The former head coach of the SuperSonics and Trail Blazers, McMillan took over the top job in Indiana in 2016, receiving a promotion to replace Frank Vogel after spending three years as an assistant on Vogel’s staff.
McMillan has guided the Pacers to a 181-136 (.571) record over the last four seasons, earning four consecutive playoff berths. Indiana’s 43-28 (.606) mark this season represents the club’s highest winning percentage since 2013/14.
The Pacers haven’t yet won a playoff series under McMillan, and there had been some chatter about a need to modernize the team’s offense, which ranks last this season in three-point attempts per game (27.8).
However, as Wojnarowski notes in his report, the 56-year-old is well-respected around the NBA and has been lauded in recent years for maximizing the Pacers’ roster despite losing star forward Paul George – who requested a trade in 2017 – and dealing with a handful of major injuries, including the torn quad tendon that sidelined Victor Oladipo for a full year.
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