Pacers fire coach Isiah Thomas

Updated: August 27, 2003, 4:54 PM ET

INDIANAPOLIS - Isiah Thomas will not get to work with Larry Bird after all.

After it appeared that Thomas had survived another first-round playoff loss, the Indiana Pacers decided to fire their coach on Wednesday.

The move comes nearly four months after the third-seeded Pacers were upset in the playoffs by the sixth-seeded Boston Celtics and a month-and-a-half after Bird returned to the organization as president of basketball operations.

Bird and Pacers chief executive officer Donnie Walsh will address the media at a 5 p.m. EDT news conference.

Since Bird was hired, speculation swirled that he would not hesitate to hire former Detroit Pistons coach Rick Carlisle if the Pacers got off to a slow start in 2003-04. However, Thomas was not even given a chance to serve out the final year of his contract.

The Pacers lost in the first round of the playoffs in each of Thomas' three seasons.

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This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index