Pacers Roundup: Season is nearing, players returning and team notes a week before camp
Pacers training camp is a week away. Get caught up on what's been going on with the team.
If you’ve been around downtown Indianapolis lately, you know there’s construction going on. A lot of it. Everywhere. Most of it centers on redoing the north split, but also road repairs, more apartments going up, etc.
And another facelift to Gainbridge Fieldhouse.
For the third consecutive year, significant renovations are ongoing. In all, about $360 million will be spent. It's a different time, and several decades later, but consider that The Fieldhouse was originally built for about $183 million in 1999.
Inside, they have refreshed the place in tiers. The lower (or event) level in Year 1, the club level and lobby in Year 2 and the balcony, plus outside, in Year 3. More details on the full extent of renovations and what to expect in an upcoming story, but it’s about that time…
And nothing says a season is approaching quite like the new schedule being painted on the wall of a building just north of the arena. It has been done annually for as long as I can remember.
You may not be from Indy or live anywhere close, so here’s also an updated look of how things are progressing outside. A few lanes are closed on Delaware St, temporary fencing is put up and if you look closely, you can see construction workers on the roof.
There’s plenty still be done before opening night, which is Oct. 19 — just one month away.
It was also one year ago when Gainbridge put its name on the building. Because construction was ongoing, it was just a temporary sign.
That changed last week when new signage was installed and looks like it did previously with Bankers Life.
🏠 Players Back in Town, Working
September is when players begin ramping up for training camp. No longer do they use camp to truly get ready for the season. If they’re not in shape and ready for camp, they’re behind.
Much of the roster has been in town all month gearing up for the new season. Several players bought homes over the summer, like Tyrese Haliburton and Oshae Brissett. Other players are getting settled into their new apartments.
These offseason workouts are obviously optional and closed to the media, but members of the social team are present and have shared some snapshots from players putting in work.
It’s a young group and one that needs experience together, so any time helps.
And now in town this week, Myles Turner. He’s ready to begin his eighth season — and the final one under contract with the Pacers.
The Pacers had several players competing in FIBA basketball over the summer. Chris Duarte, Buddy Hield, Goga Bitadze and Daniel Theis.
EuroBasket 2022, which seemingly didn’t get much attention in the U.S., wrapped up over the weekend with Spain topping France in the gold medal game.
Theis and Germany won a bronze medal after its win over Poland, 82-69. Theis finished with nine points and six rebounds in 21 minutes.
He was acquired in the offseason as the Pacers sent Malcolm Brogdon to the Celtics. But the Pacers are already stacked with bigs.
🏆 Former Pacers assistant part of WNBA Championship
The Las Vegas Aces secured the WNBA title Sunday by defeating the Connecticut Sun 3-1 in the finals. The Aces are incredibly talented and are well-coached with Becky Hammon, her first year on the job.
Also at the center of the title is Tyler Marsh, the son of Donnie Marsh — who basketball fans likely know. Tyler spent the last two seasons with the Pacers, then departed after the season to become one of Hammon’s assistant coaches.
I talked with Hammon earlier this season about Marsh and her close friend Jenny Boucek, and I also had Marsh on the Fieldhouse Files Podcast when the Aces were in Indy.
Marsh now has championships in the G League (Rio Grande Valley Vipers), NBA (Toronto Raptors) and WNBA.
And he has a baby boy due on Sept. 22. What a year for Marsh and his family.
📋 Mad Ants finalize coaching staff
Tom Hankins enters his third season as head coach of the Mad Ants, the Pacers’ G League affiliate. He originally signed a four-year deal when he joined the Pacers organization in 2019.
He’ll have an entirely new staff this upcoming season.
Dylan DeBusk moves from Pacers video coordinator to assistant Mad Ants coach. He’s joined by Justin Wetzel and James Cambronne (who will also serve as video coordinator).
And a familiar name to Pacers employees, Steve Miknis, returns to the organization as a coaching associate after coaching in Glasgow, Scotland last season.
Media day for the Mad Ants will be held in Fort Wayne on Nov. 1.
A few more things…
Tyrese Haliburton spent a lot of time in Los Angeles and worked with skills trainer Drew Hanlen. Who else was often part of those workouts? Former Pacer Victor Oladipo.
Did you see Haliburton’s ask on Twitter last week? He wanted to know which high school football game to attend — and I’m told he attended Ben Davis at Warren Central. Don’t be surprised to see more of that from Haliburton.
The Pacers formally signed Bennie Boatwright, Gabe York and David Stockton to Exhibit 10 deals last week, All are expected to play for the Mad Ants.
The organization is holding its annual golf outing Wednesday, benefitting The Pacers Foundation.
We are expected to hear from team president Kevin Pritchard this week ahead of media day, which is scheduled for Monday, Sept. 26.
An adult roles and responsibilities class at Westfield High School hosts speakers each week and earlier this month, Pacers general manager Chad Buchanan provided a professional sports perspective.
His son, Trey, is a junior at Westfield and plays basketball.