Welcome back to the top of the Central Division, Indiana Pacers.

It’s been too long since you’ve been there.

After eight years of watching Detroit, Cleveland and Chicago take turns being at the top, the Pacers can call themselves the best in the division again.

The Pacers didn’t win the division be beating an opponent, they got an assist from an all-too-familiar opponent.

The Detroit Pistons beat the Chicago Bulls on Sunday night, giving the Pacers their first division title since the 2003-04 season.

The victory ended an 18-game losing streak to the Bulls by the Pistons.

The streak couldn’t have ended at a better time for the Pacers.

How the Pacers won the title doesn’t matter.

It definitely doesn’t matter after years of off-the-court problems and years of rebuilding.

The commitment and patience from the front office – starting with former president Larry Bird and continuing with current president Donnie Walsh and general manager Kevin Pritchard – has finally paid off.

“Amazing accomplishment,” Pritchard said. “Larry Bird is sitting at home smiling as we speak.”

Coach Frank Vogel took over a struggling team more than two years ago and got it to the playoffs three months later.