Sources: Pacers adding Jannero Pargo to staff
He played 11 seasons in the NBA, coached in the G League and was most recently with the Trail Blazers.
The Pacers continue to make changes to the coaching staff. Former NBA guard Jannero Pargo is expected to join Rick Carlisle’s staff, league sources told Fieldhouse Files.
This is a week after the team officially announced the assistant coaches — Lloyd Pierce, Ronald Nored, Mike Weinar and Jenny Boucek.
Pargo spent the last two seasons on Terry Stotts’ staff in Portland, replacing David Vanterpool, who left for the Timberwolves in 2019.
… which led to me to immediately search for a connection between Pargo, and Kevin Pritchard and Chad Buchanan, both of whom also worked for the Blazers. There doesn’t seem to be one. Pargo did play two seasons in Charlotte (2013-15), but Buchanan was hired there as assistant GM in 2015.
Pargo spent 11 seasons in the league and played for seven teams. And before arriving in Portland in 2019, he served as an assistant coach in the G League with the Windy City Bulls for two seasons.
The deal is not yet finalized, but he will likely be in the role of assistant coach for player development. Calbert Cheaney and Tyler Marsh are still under contract with the Pacers and they’ve been in Indy this month to help run the pre-draft workouts.
Pargo, a native of Chicago, is 41 years old and still has game. He played in the Big3 and his team, the Triplets, won the championship in 2019 headlined by his former University of Arkansas teammate Joe Johnson. Former Pacer Al Jefferson was also a member of that team, which was coached by Lisa Leslie.
After firing head coach Nate Bjorkgren in June, Pritchard acknowledged that the players needed to be more accountable to the team and to one another. He singled out Jefferson’s positive influence in the locker room for two seasons (2016-18) and how that’s an area where they must improve.
“We need somebody that sits on the bench, that's good enough to play, but also holds everybody accountable,” Pritchard said, then indirectly referenced lifelong Miami Heat player Udonis Haslem. “They've got a player that has played with them for 20 years, and he is the best in the business, and it's why they're good. It's one of the reasons why they're good.
“When you have a locker room that that holds each other accountable, that isn't afraid to have some tough love, that is willing to give it, then you know you have it.”
Pargo has a strong reputation for connecting with players, like Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum. He’s been in their shoes, played for big- and small-market teams, and had to earn every minute of playing time.
Here’s what Lillard said about Pargo (via NBC Sports Northwest): “Some things happen in practice where the coaches will break it down to us one way when we make a mistake, and with him he’s … telling us from a perspective that we’ll understand a little bit more and be a little bit more receptive to him because he’s coming from our position.”
Carlisle is putting together an impressive staff that is well-rounded — with a former NBA head coach (Pierce), former WNBA head coach (Boucek), high-level college player (Nored) and a relentless worker (Weinar).
It’s a busy next four weeks for The Association — with the draft (July 29), free agency (Aug. 2), and then Las Vegas Summer League (Aug. 8-17).