The NBA Indiana Pacers basketball team play in the Eastern Conference’s Central Division in the National Basketball Association. The Pacers are based out of Indianapolis, Indiana and play at Conseco Fieldhouse along with the WNBA team the Indiana Fever. Herb Simon owns both the Pacers and Fever team.
The Indiana Pacers started playing in the American Basketball Association in 1967. The Pacers won three ABA championships. In 1976, they joined the NBA after the NBA-ABA merger. Indiana rose to prominence after acquiring Reggie Miller, but since their appearance in the NBA Finals in 2000, haven’t seen much success and haven’t appeared in the playoffs since 2005-2006.
The Pacers drafted Reggie Miller in 1987 and Rik Smits in 1988. Larry Brown was hired as the Pacers head coach in 1993-94 and Indiana acquired Derrick McKey from Seattle. The Pacers won 47 games and in the first round of the playoffs defeated the Orlando Magic and Shaquille O’Neal to win their first playoff series in the NBA. They also defeated the Atlanta Hawks to win the Conference Semifinals before losing to the New York Knicks in the Eastern Conference Finals of 1994.
The Pacers went 52-30 in 1994-95 after acquiring point guard Mark Jackson from the Los Angeles Clippers. The Pacers won the Central Division title for the first time. The Pacers defeated the Knicks to win the Conference Semifinals before losing the Eastern Conference Finals to the Orlando Magic. For the 1997-98 season, Larry Bird was hired as the Pacers head coach. Chris Mullin was acquired to start at small forward and the Pacers went 58-24. Indiana lost to Chicago in the Eastern Conference Finals. In 1998-99, the Pacers lost the Eastern Conference finals to the Knicks. Indiana finally reached the NBA Finals in 2000 where they were defeated by the Los Angeles Lakes. In 2004-05, the Indiana Pacers made the playoffs for the thirteenth time in 14 years. The Pacers were defeated by the Detroit Pistons in the Eastern Conference Finals. In his last NBA game, Reggie Millers score 27 points but ended his 18-year-career without winning an NBA championship.