Pacers To Make Vogel Permanent Coach?

After taking over the Indiana Pacers when Jim O’Brien was removed as head coach, interim coach Frank Vogel guided a young Pacers team into the playoffs and tested the Eastern Conference Champions Chicago Bulls in the playoffs.

And after a successful time as interim head coach, it seems Indiana might be making Vogel the permanent head coach for Indiana according to Yahoo! Sports:

The Indiana Pacers have made significant progress toward deciding to make interim Frank Vogel the permanent head coach while working to strengthen his grip on the locker room, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

No final decision has been reached, but sources said most of the hurdles have been cleared for Vogel to be offered a multi-year contract in the near future.

Smart move by Indiana and well deserved for Vogel. To take over a team, and guide them to the playoffs speaks volumes about Vogel who did this as a rookie head coach in the NBA. Not only that, he changed the Pacers’ offensive and defensive playbook and it got immediate results.

However, the Pacers are concerned about Vogel’s ability to command the respect of the players:

Despite a 20-18 finish to the regular season and a competitive first-round playoff loss to the top-seeded Chicago Bulls, there was slippage on issues like punctuality and discipline, league sources said.

To remedy that, Vogel has worked with management to target several strong assistant coaches, including Porter and Bickerstaff. Vogel is the league’s youngest coach at 37, and doesn’t have the stature that might otherwise command easier respect.