The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Pro Sports

April 11, 2014

Leonard still believes in the Pacers

ANDERSON — For the past 36 hours, the NBA universe has been buzzing about the decision made by Indiana Pacers' coach Frank Vogel to rest all of his starting five Wednesday in Milwaukee.

On Thursday, long-time Indiana coach and broadcaster Bobby Leonard was at Hoosier Park to do a meet and greet with fans. He had a historical perspective on Vogel's decision.

"When I was coaching (the Pacers in the ABA) we had a big lead in the East," said Leonard. "I think we were about 16 games ahead. So I rested half my starters in one game and then the other half in the next."

So he agrees with the decision?

"I think it was a good move," said Leonard. "I think was something (team president) Larry (Bird) wanted as well. It was a great win. I was so happy for (Chris) Copeland that he made that (game-winning) shot."

The move turned out to be successful beyond resting the starters and getting the win. Miami also lost to Memphis on Wednesday, moving Indiana a half-game ahead of the Heat for the top seed in the East. The Heat and Pacers play tonight in Miami.

But what if the move had resulted in a loss and the Heat would have won? Leonard had a history lesson up his sleeve for that possibility as well.

"We (Pacers) won (the deciding game in) three ABA championships on the road," said Leonard. "We won the first one in Los Angeles, the second in New York and the third in Kentucky. I never thought that in the playoffs, the home court was that big a deal. If you can't win on the road, you're not very good."

Yet tonight's game in Miami may really have ramifications beyond which team finishes with the best record.

Text Only
Pro Sports
  • SPT - HB0823 - Saints art Saints should provide barometer for ambitious Colts The last two meetings with the New Orleans Saints have ended in misery for the Indianapolis Colts.

    August 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0819 - McAfee art George Bremer: McAfee can't wait for another shot at miracle finish Two days later, Pat McAfee still was kicking himself for missing a 64-yard field goal that would have provided an even more improbable finish to Saturday's 27-26 preseason loss against the New York Giants.

    August 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0818 - Griff Whalen art Rogers, Whalen heating up WR conversation Da'Rick Rogers and Griff Whalen are competing so hard for the fifth WR spot, the Colts might be convinced to keep six.

    August 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • WEB Colts art 8-17 Giants rally past Colts in preseason home opener Pat McAfee truly believes he should have made a game-winning field goal for the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday night. Never mind that the punter's attempt came from 64 yards out — a distance that would have equaled the NFL record set by Matt Prater last year. McAfee was focused only on the 27-26 loss against the New York Giants and how his right foot could have changed it.

    August 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0816 - Colts art Colts still in evaluation mode against Giants

    Many eyes will be turned toward Jonotthan Harrison tonight when the Indianapolis Colts host the New York Giants in their second preseason game. The undrafted free agent out of the University of Florida figures to be the starting center following Khaled Holmes' sprained ankle in the opener against the New York Jets.

    August 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0814 - Colts Camp - 130 Colts end eventful camp on light note

    Chuck Pagano threw his team a little curveball Wednesday to close out the 2014 training camp, providing a light-hearted finish to a three-week stretch at Anderson University that often tested the team's mettle.

    August 13, 2014 2 Photos

  • Contract's up, but AU confident Colts will return AU president James Edwards believes the school soon will begin working on a new deal with the Colts.

    August 13, 2014

  • SPT - HB0813 - Colts Camp - Luck Watch - 058.JPG Colts Quick Hits: Aug. 13

    News and notes from Colts training camp at Anderson University

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0813 - Colts Camp - Kerr - 032 Colts rookie Kerr not satisfied, not yet As an undrafted free agent rookie out of Delaware, Colts nose tackle Zach Kerr came into training camp knowing he had to prove himself worthy of a spot on the Indianapolis roster.

    August 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0813 - Colts Camp - Wayne - 126 Wayne making most of every moment in comeback

    Reggie Wayne had a surprise visitor during his media session Tuesday at Anderson University. And Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano just couldn't resist asking his wide receiver a few questions.

    August 12, 2014 1 Photo