Ex-Pistons coach George Irvine dies at age 69

Associated Press

Indianapolis — The Indiana Pacers say former Pistons coach George Irvine has died. He was 69 and had been battling cancer.

The Pacers announced the death Tuesday after speaking with Irvine’s family.

He became Indiana’s head coach in 1984 after three seasons as an assistant with the team. He went 48-116 in two seasons and later returned as the Pacers interim coach in 1988-89. Irvine got a second chance with Detroit in 1999-2000 and stuck around for one more season. The Washington state native finished his head coaching career with a record of 100-190.

"The Pistons organization is deeply saddened by the news of the passing of former head coach George Irvine," the Pistons tweeted on Tuesday.

McCosky: Irvine was calm during Pistons’ stormy times

Irvine coached the Pistons for 24 games in 1999-2000, going 14-10 after replacing Alvin Gentry as Detroit reached the playoffs. Detroit, seeded seventh, was ousted in the first round by the second-seeded Miami Heat.

He went 32-50 the following season, his only full season in Detroit.

Irvine also served as an assistant with the Pacers, Pistons, Golden State, Denver and the Virginia Squires in the defunct ABA. The Seattle Supersonics took him in the eighth round of the 1970 draft.