Bird, who was recently named the NBA’s Executive of the Year, is being replaced by Donnie Walsh, as reported earlier this week. Kevin Pritchad becomes the team’s general manager.
“Larry could have stayed here as long as he wants,” owner Herb Simon said (via the Indianapolis Star) in announcing the moves, “but he has his own reasons.”
Those reasons concern his back and shoulder, but his explanation was simply, “I just think it's time. It's the right time to go.”
Bird, 55, plans to take a year off, then decide what he’ll do next. He was asked if he might one day be a Pacers owner and cracked, “Depends how much Herbie leaves me in the will.”