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Pacers’ Caris LeVert, Doug McDermott sound off on ‘noisy’ Nate Bjorkgren controversy

Nate Bjorkgren, Doug McDermott, Caris LeVert, Pacers

Amid the controversy surrounding Nate Bjorkgren and the Indiana Pacers, Caris LeVert and Doug McDermott are choosing to stand by their coach and continue to play their best basketball.

Guard TJ McConnel, referring to their 104-93 loss to the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday, said that they’re still standing by Nate Bjorkgen. Reports surfaced earlier this week that the coach’s future with the Pacers might be in peril.

“We played easily the worst game of the season yesterday. All the things circulating, I don’t think this looks like a locker room that quit on their coach. … We love playing for him. We’re going to continue to fight,” McConnel said, per Pacers reporter J. Michael of the Indianapolis Star.

Several reports reveal Bjorkgen’s rather aggressive coaching style which has affected both players and staff. This has negatively influenced their win-loss record, as well as the Pacers’ culture.

“He’s just very different,” said one league executive who has worked previously with Bjorkgren. “He’s not a d–k; he’s just completely out of his element as a leader.”

“He didn’t come in relationship-building in an easy way from day one,” said one Pacers voice, per Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report.

Despite this, Caris LeVert and Doug McDermott echoed McConnel’s sentiments. The mission remains the same: to play ball and do their best to win with the Pacers, never mind the controversies hounding them.

To recall, Bjorkgren was hired by the Pacers in October after the team fired Nate McMillan. The coach has one more year on his three-year contract.