INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Pacers President Donnie Walsh doesn't think his team has to make many adjustments to be able to contend for an NBA title.
Since coach Frank Vogel took over the team midway through the 2010-11 season, the Pacers have done nothing but take steps forward. They went to the playoffs for the first time in four years when Vogel took over, then lost to the eventual champion Miami Heat in the second round of the playoffs last season.
"Continue that, you just continue the way we've been," Walsh said Monday. "The priority of the team is to play like we did at the end of last year, which meant becoming a true team."
Vogel is ready to take the next step and that means going further in the playoffs.
"We want to grow," Vogel said. "Looking from a playoff standpoint we got to the second round last year so we're hoping to get further than that."
The first changes though were in the front office. Larry Bird stepped down as president of basketball operations and Walsh returned to the organization to fill the position. Kevin Pritchard replaced David Morway as general manager.
Then the roster changes started.
Darren Collison went from starting point guard to the bench and then was sent to the Dallas Mavericks so the Pacers could acquire a backup center in Ian Mahinmi to play behind Roy Hibbert, who signed a new contract in the offseason. New faces include point guard D.J. Augustin, backing up George Hill, and forward Gerald Green.