Roy Hibbert to Have a ‘Diminished’ Role With the Pacers Next Season

by April 20, 2015

As the Indiana Pacers prepare to enter the so-called pace and space era of the modern NBA, lumbering center Roy Hibbert appears to be the odd man out.

Both head coach Frank Vogel and team president Larry Bird indicated that they’re not thrilled with the big fella’s production, and that reduced playing time is likely to occur in 2015-16.

The Pacers struggled to put points on the board this season, finishing 24th in the L at 97.3 points per game.

Per the Indy Star:

Pacers president Larry Bird and coach Frank Vogel made it clear at their season-ending press conference Friday that center Roy Hibbert will have a different role if he opts in for the final year on his contract. […] “If (Hibbert) comes back we’re probably going to play another style and I can’t guarantee him anything,” Bird said. “He’s going to have to earn it.”


When asked for his assessment of Hibbert’s play, Bird said: “I didn’t think he played that well, to be honest. I thought he always played hard. He’s very durable but I don’t think he had a great year.” […] Hibbert has a $15.5 million player option for the 2015-16 season. The salary cap will almost certainly get a significant increase for the 2016-17 season due to a new television contract for the league, so there would likely be more money available if Hibbert waits an additional season to hit the free agent market.


“Whatever he does, he does,” Bird said. “We’ll assume he’s going to come back.” […] Hibbert was an All-Star in 2014 but has seen his play fall off since then. He averaged 10.6 points on 44.6 percent shooting with 7.1 rebounds this season.