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Schoettle: Pacers Coach Vogel Said Hibbert "Not Going Anywhere"

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Anthony Schoettle of the Indianapolis Business Journal has a nice look at what Indiana Pacers restricted free agent center Roy Hibbert means to the community and how committed the Pacers are to retaining him after the Portland Trail Blazers reportedly agreed to extend a 4-year, $58 million maximum offer sheet to Hibbert. --------------------------------- While the small-market Pacers have been extra thrifty in recent years to get the franchise on better financial footing, Hibbert will be a tough player to let go. ... Not only has Hibbert turned into an all-star on the court, he’s also turned into a fan favorite who has been as active as any Pacer in this community off the court. Hibbert’s work for the Children’s Wish Fund and other charitable organizations in this town is well-known. Two years ago, Hibbert founded Area 55. He bought 55 season tickets and hand-picked the 55 loudest Pacers fans to place in the section inside Bankers Life Fieldhouse. ... "Of course this isn't going to be [Hibbert’s] last time in Indy, he’s not going anywhere," [Pacers coach Frank] Vogel said at one of Hibbert’s charity events last month. --------------------------------- Olshey and Blazers president Larry Miller made Hibbert their first stop of the 2012 Free Agency period. Hibbert was reportedly "blown away" by Olshey and company. Hibbert, 25, just completed his fourth season with the Indiana Pacers, posting career-high averages of 12.8 points, 8.8 rebounds and 2.0 blocks per game. He played in 65 of Indiana's 66 games last season. Hibbert, listed at 7-foot-2 and 278 pounds, is generally regarded as a top-5 free agent in this year's class and the best available center. -- Ben Golliver | benjamin.golliver@gmail.com | Twitter
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