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View Full Version : Gnome's Pacers Road trip 2011 (OKC, DAL & HOU) (Update: See Chris Denari's interview with the 'Road Warriors')



Roaming Gnome
03-02-2011, 05:41 AM
Last year Duke Dynamite, My better half and myself went on a little road trip to Oklahoma City to catch our Pacers on a road trip to the NBA's newest destination. The trip was so much fun that we decided to do it again. Last year, we realized that Dallas was only a couple hours down the road from OKC (Brings into perspective Cuban being the only owner to frown on the Thunder's move into Cuban's back yard).

Last Seasons road trip (http://www.pacersdigest.com/showthread.php?t=49732)

This season when we noticed the Pacers schedule works out that the "Texas 2 step" was included onto this year's trip to OKC... We just had to do it considering I'd like to make it to all the NBA venues. I already am ahead of the game considering that I have been to two that are not in play anymore, Seattle and Vancouver!

Duke couldn't make it down this year, but Naptown_Seth and his better half are meeting us down in Dallas on Friday for the Mavs game and travelling with us to the Houston game on Saturday night. They couldn't get the time off work to share in the joy that is the coming to OKC and the long drive back to Indy from Houston (don't blame them, as I'm dreading the long road back to Indy after Houston).

Anywho, I plan to use this thread to chronicle the trip, share photos and starting line-up videos from the different venues that we will be at on this trip.

The trip down wasn't too bad at all this year considering I wasn't sick as a dog like last year. We made good time and got here to OKC in 10 hours. Best thing about this year, we only had to fill up twice. Once leaving Indy and halfway here around Ft. Leonard Wood, MO. Last year, the SUV definitely used more gas then the car!

The folks around here are crazy about their Thunder as we heard some "Go Thunder" as my wife and I were tooling around town last night in our Pacers gear looking for a bite to eat. Considering how folks in Indy are still shelving their Pacer Pride, it was refreshing to hear the locals embracing the team.... Eventhough, it is easy to get behind a winner!!!! But, our trip here last year told us that the team would be followed with enthusiasm regardless of the outcome in the standings. Almost like the Kings before their run of success.

If you do make it down here and want some good Pizza, I suggest Pizza House off Pennsylvania and 23rd St. It is a hole in the wall dive/carry out with a couple tables, but the Pizza is very good. We ended up here off the recommendation of a gas station attendant and a couple of her customers in line.

Later today, we plan on visiting the National Memorial from the tragedy in 1995 and getting some steak considering that Beef is one of OKC's claim to fame in the eating category. Then it will be close enough to game time to hopefully get to chit chat with Mike Wells and some other Pacer folks that we might run into before tip.

duke dynamite
03-02-2011, 08:09 AM
I wish I could be there, but knowing how much fun we had last year I know you guys will have a blast.

Sollozzo
03-02-2011, 08:35 AM
Later today, we plan on visiting the National Memorial from the tragedy in 1995 and getting some steak considering that Beef is one of OKC's claim to fame in the eating category. Then it will be close enough to game time to hopefully get to chit chat with Mike Wells and some other Pacer folks that we might run into before tip.



I've been to the Memorial before. It's top-notch all around. Such a moving place.

90'sNBARocked
03-02-2011, 11:25 AM
Does your wife have a sister?

lol, must be nice to have wifey love or respect your love for the Pacers

PacersFan1991
03-02-2011, 11:46 AM
Good to know I won't be the only Pacers fan in the arena tonight! Looking foward to the game.

Peck
03-02-2011, 01:12 PM
I had to read this twice as at first I thought you were calling Duke your better half.:D

On your way back you should swing over to Alabama as Squeelers is competing this weekend in a BBQ cookoff.

Speed
03-02-2011, 01:21 PM
Oh ya, get some Rudys BBQ in Texas, while you're down there. Place looks like a gas station, but its good stuff. Get the creamed corn, trust me!

I hope you have a great time!!

joeyd
03-02-2011, 01:35 PM
The Bricktown Brewery was a place that I frequented often when I lived in Oklahoma City. Good eats and drinks at a reasonable price.

Also, if you have time, check out the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. Within the museum is the Cowboy Hall of Fame, not to mention an outstanding collection of Remington and Russel Scuptures and Trail of Tears artwork and artifacts. This is the jewel of OKC.

Peck
03-02-2011, 01:45 PM
Here's an updated texas BBQ list for you.

http://manuptexasbbq.blogspot.com/2011/03/sxsw-2011-bbq-guide.html

BillS
03-02-2011, 01:54 PM
BBQ in Dallas? Send the better halves off sightseeing and you and Seth try <a href="http://www.bonedaddys.com/">Bone Daddy's</a> :innocent:

pujhutt50
03-02-2011, 01:56 PM
Goode Company BBQ when you are in Houston. Amazing.

RWB
03-02-2011, 01:57 PM
Forget the BBQ, go to Dallas and clear up was it Lee Harvey alone, LBJ, or the mob?

Speed
03-02-2011, 02:10 PM
Here's an updated texas BBQ list for you.

http://manuptexasbbq.blogspot.com/2011/03/sxsw-2011-bbq-guide.html


Ha!!! They have Rudys listed (with a creamed corn mention!)

Rudy's "Country Store" & Bar-B-Q (http://www.rudys.com/) (Austin): With a diverse menu, a staff that takes it time serving samples to "rookies' to help them with their orders, and the option of ordering as much or as little of any meat you want, Rudy's is a great way to ease into Texas BBQ. Recommended order:extra-moist brisket, turkey, & creamed corn (unless you don't like creamed corn that is so rich & sweet that it's suitable for dessert)

cdash
03-02-2011, 02:15 PM
Sounds like a blast, make sure to give us a full report upon your return.

For the record, I made many a drives last year from Houston to Evansville and vice versa, and it is aggressively unfun. Adding the extra three hours to Indy would be enough to do me in. Godspeed.

duke dynamite
03-02-2011, 02:40 PM
I'm going to St. Louis this weekend. Their BBQ is tops.

avoidingtheclowns
03-02-2011, 03:05 PM
Forget the BBQ, go to Dallas and clear up was it Lee Harvey alone, LBJ, or the mob?

Know how many assassins it took to kill JFK? There were no gunmen at all. His head just did that. I call it the "No Bullet theory".

Roaming Gnome
03-02-2011, 06:44 PM
Great day thus far.. Started at the OKC Nat'l Memorial then to Lunch at Cattlemen's Steakhouse, bought me a new Western Hat that will be a fixture on my head the rest of the trip. Now we are about to walk to the arena that is practically connected to our hotel.

OKC so good, so far. Tonight, we will be sitting about 6 to 8 rows above one of the baselines. Hopefully you'll see us on the broadcast tonight!

grace
03-02-2011, 06:54 PM
Hopefully you'll see us on the broadcast tonight!

Not much will get me to watch the Pacers...this might.

Trophy
03-02-2011, 06:56 PM
I know Ford no longer owns the naming rights for the arena, but do they have a sign on the building?

Don't they just call it OKC Arena now?

pacer4ever
03-02-2011, 08:00 PM
They just showed u guys and Chris is gonna talk about you guys and how u are gonna be there for the full road trip

Roaming Gnome
03-02-2011, 10:50 PM
I know Ford no longer owns the naming rights for the arena, but do they have a sign on the building?

Don't they just call it OKC Arena now?

It's officially called the Oklahoma City Arena.

The scene of the crime. OMG that was brutal! Nothing like getting pounded like that when wearing the enemies colors!

vnzla81
03-02-2011, 10:52 PM
It's officially called the Oklahoma City Arena.

The scene of the crime. OMG that was brutal! Nothing like getting pounded like that when wearing the enemies colors!

They showed you on TV and Denari talked about you for few minutes, you are famous now ;)

Doug
03-02-2011, 10:55 PM
They showed you on TV and Denari talked about you for few minutes, you are famous now ;)Nice hat, too.

Bball
03-02-2011, 10:55 PM
I'll need an autograph now. You got extended TV time and mentions plus a plug for PD.com while you were onscreen.

El Pacero
03-02-2011, 10:56 PM
Great job reppin' the Pacers AND PD Roaming Gnome. The TV cameras didn't even catch you holding a beer.

vnzla81
03-02-2011, 10:58 PM
Great job reppin' the Pacers AND PD Roaming Gnome. The TV cameras didn't even catch you holding a beer.

They also showed your big brother Pacero :laugh:

Trophy
03-02-2011, 11:03 PM
Have a safe drive to Dallas, Gnome.

Hopefully it'll be worth it than tonight's game.

PacerGuy
03-02-2011, 11:04 PM
They just showed u guys and Chris is gonna talk about you guys and how u are gonna be there for the full road trip
P4E, dude,
W/ all the sig photo's/phrases/ect. going on under your posts I can only think of the line in "Cape Fear" when R.De Niro's character is in the lockup & the cop says "I don't know if I should look at him or read him".
A little too much going on there IMO. Love the passion, but the content is watered down (IMO).

PacersFan1991
03-02-2011, 11:13 PM
Good meeting you tonight Gnome!

pacer4ever
03-02-2011, 11:14 PM
P4E, dude,
W/ all the sig photo's/phrases/ect. going on under your posts I can only think of the line in "Cape Fear" when R.De Niro's character is in the lockup & the cop says "I don't know if I should look at him or read him".
A little too much going on there IMO. Love the passion, but the content is watered down (IMO).

Look at Ernie he is the best person /athete combo of all time.:)

When I grow up I wanna be like Ernie

Roaming Gnome
03-03-2011, 12:24 AM
I just returned from the Marriott's Bar here.... had to drink my post game sorrows away.

Peck
03-03-2011, 12:33 AM
http://i437.photobucket.com/albums/qq98/parasource/Ellie232.jpg

Gnome looking how most of us felt watching this game.

But you do have to admire the new hat.

http://i437.photobucket.com/albums/qq98/parasource/Ellie234.jpg

Naptown_Seth
03-03-2011, 12:36 AM
BBQ in Dallas? Send the better halves off sightseeing and you and Seth try Bone Daddy's (http://www.bonedaddys.com/) :innocent:
Look you bunch of yahoos, as a former Houston resident I'm not going to settle for BBQ on my trip back when a perfectly good Pappasitos can be found. :)

BBQ is good, but it's been a LONG time since I had some kick-butt Tex-Mex.



And obviously Dallas is a steak town. I think they do it lobster style where you get to pick your cow from a pasture and then have it freshly cooked. It's hard to get them into that pot of boiling water though, dumb as they might be.



Good meeting you tonight Gnome!
Were you one of the two guys right behind the bench? I was wondering all game.

cdash
03-03-2011, 12:39 AM
Look you bunch of yahoos, as a former Houston resident I'm not going to settle for BBQ on my trip back when a perfectly good Pappasitos can be found. :)

BBQ is good, but it's been a LONG time since I had some kick-butt Tex-Mex.



And obviously Dallas is a steak town. I think they do it lobster style where you get to pick your cow from a pasture and then have it freshly cooked. It's hard to get them into that pot of boiling water though, dumb as they might be.



Were you one of the two guys right behind the bench? I was wondering all game.

I love Pappasitos. Ate it all the time when I was down there. I never really got into the BBQ scene a great deal, not sure why.

PacersFan1991
03-03-2011, 12:41 AM
Look you bunch of yahoos, as a former Houston resident I'm not going to settle for BBQ on my trip back when a perfectly good Pappasitos can be found. :)

BBQ is good, but it's been a LONG time since I had some kick-butt Tex-Mex.



And obviously Dallas is a steak town. I think they do it lobster style where you get to pick your cow from a pasture and then have it freshly cooked. It's hard to get them into that pot of boiling water though, dumb as they might be.



Were you one of the two guys right behind the bench? I was wondering all game.


No I was in the club level.

RWB
03-03-2011, 08:29 AM
I'll need an autograph now. You got extended TV time and mentions plus a plug for PD.com while you were onscreen.

Get Lisa's it will be more important. :devil: Loved it, watching the game my Lisa pointed out....there's Lisa, then said along the lines, oh Eric too. :D

Kaufman
03-03-2011, 09:20 AM
unfortunately..... that would be 6 feet under.


Look at Ernie he is the best person /athete combo of all time.:)

When I grow up I wanna be like Ernie

BillS
03-03-2011, 09:31 AM
And obviously Dallas is a steak town. I think they do it lobster style where you get to pick your cow from a pasture and then have it freshly cooked. It's hard to get them into that pot of boiling water though, dumb as they might be.

You been gone that long? You pick your cow and tell them how many times you want it to run through the fire before they serve it to you.

vnzla81
03-03-2011, 10:00 AM
I love Pappasitos. Ate it all the time when I was down there. I never really got into the BBQ scene a great deal, not sure why.

Trust me you don't want to tell anybody that you love pappasitos :laugh:

Hicks
03-03-2011, 10:14 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqCfIvLCJQM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J4pVf0_mp8I

Kegboy
03-03-2011, 10:37 AM
So, is Seth sitting with you guys at the other games? It'd be pretty cool if when you got on TV again they referred to him as "the girl who got Jim O'Brien fired."

:runout:

Roaming Gnome
03-03-2011, 11:53 AM
Well, I guess the camera doesn't lie about how hard that was to sit there all Pacer Gear'd up watching your boys get taken behind the woodshed!

Anyway, yesterday was pretty amazing despite the outcome of the game.. I'm still thinking about the Cattlemen's Steakhouse. This place truly was the place for steak. When we set off for this trip we made it a mission to "eat local"... NO CHAINS!!! We knew that OKC and this area of the country is known for cattle, so the obvious choice should be steak, right? Just to find places to eat I Googled "Places to eat in OKC" and came up with many top 10 list, but the name at the top of most list was or top 3 of all the list was the "Cattlemen's Steakhouse". I read the reviews and the people giving the reviews were extremely positive and glowing about the place. The restaurants website touted that they often served the last president his steak whenever he comes through OKC. My first thought was.... EXPENSIVE. So, we started looking for other steakhouses. Then we came back to looking at Cattlemen's. We decided screw it.... If this is the best place, I want some good meat.

Well, we look up the address and see a photo of the building... Nothing upscale at all... The place actually sits outside the OKC Stockyards. As we pull into the lot, we see the place is very busy, but the folks going in and out looked very casual. The lot is full of average cars, not Bentley's and Jag's. So, my wallet is starting to fill a lot better about this place. After we're seated, we check out the menu.... I'm just blown away by the prices. They were dirt cheap!!! Being from the school of "you get what you pay for", I expected middle of the road. On the menu, I seen this: "President's Choice" T-Bone... A steak with the full flavor of a T-bone, but the tenderness of Fillet. This is the steak that "W" orders when he passes through Oklahoma City. $26.99 Hmm... a $27 steak, sides included. I automatically think, can't be that good. Sure as hell isn't St. Elmo's good!

Best piece of steak that I ever put into my mouth!!! That includes St. Elmo's!!

I asked my server how is this steak so flavorful? He just told me that the steak came directly from the Stockyards. You're not going to get beef this fresh in many places.

Lisa got the Fillet Mignon... it was the biggest Fillet that I'd seen and it was only $23.95 sides included. She said that it was tender as any Fillet that she ever had, but it looked like it was a 12 oz. steak.

After we rolled out of Cattlemen's, we walked through Stockyard City. This is the place where there are western stores and a native american jewelry and art store. I obviously got my hat from one of the western stores. A native american gentleman by the name of Looking Glass said the hat was me! It's not the traditional 10 Gallon hat, but a hat that I thought would work in Indy. Then we went to the Native American jewelry and art store and I seen a painting/drawing that was pretty moving to me... It showed a native american U.S. Soldier over in the Middle East with his rifle strapped to his back applying the eyeblack. Over this soldier's shoulder was drawn a ghost of maybe an ancestor with his face paint and a quiver full of arrows like he was about to go to battle. It really was touching for some reason! Anyway, when I started talking to this store keep, mind you... she's in her 60's maybe even 70's. She asked if this was our first time in OKC? Obviously not, she said that she assumed that we were here for the game wearing our jerseys out around town. Then she started talking "smack" about how our boys were going to be in for a long night and the Thunder need this win after their losing streak... She started talking strategy and Durant's recent struggles from the line. Then another senior store keep comes from the back to talk Thunder basketball. It was pretty amazing to me that such a wide cross section of people love the Thunder down here.

Well, we are about to leave OKC for Dallas with a pit stop in Ardmore, OK to stop at the 2 Frogs Grill to get some of the best Frog Legs in the state. Or that is what a gentleman at the bar last night told me.... Eating Local, or as Applebee's puts it... "Eating good in the neighborhood!"

See y'all in Dallas!

joeyd
03-03-2011, 12:19 PM
Thanks for bringing back fond memories. Been 12 years since I moved from OKC out to Indy. You brought up many of the main things that I miss. People are friendly but passionate, and the steak and many of the restaurants are both fantastic and very affordable.

Hicks
03-03-2011, 12:36 PM
<iframe title="YouTube video player" width="640" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/kqCfIvLCJQM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

<iframe title="YouTube video player" width="640" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/J4pVf0_mp8I" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

I was on the iPad last time, so I couldn't embed them.

BillS
03-03-2011, 12:40 PM
I would bet the reason for the flavor is that they do their own aging. You don't want beef straight from the stockyards, you want it to hang a bit so it can tenderize.

Thjbdtys

... sorry, got :drool: in the keyboard... it'll be grillin' time soon in Indiana.

Trader Joe
03-03-2011, 02:58 PM
I would bet the reason for the flavor is that they do their own aging. You don't want beef straight from the stockyards, you want it to hang a bit so it can tenderize.

Thjbdtys

... sorry, got :drool: in the keyboard... it'll be grillin' time soon in Indiana.

Gimme that red meat!

I'm already waiting for that first 60+ spring day...

vnzla81
03-03-2011, 03:24 PM
Gimme that red meat!


:twss:

Roaming Gnome
03-03-2011, 04:29 PM
78 degree day here in Dallas... Shorts and sandals baby!

Alabama-Redneck
03-03-2011, 05:02 PM
Thanks for bringing back fond memories. Been 12 years since I moved from OKC out to Indy. You brought up many of the main things that I miss. People are friendly but passionate, and the steak and many of the restaurants are both fantastic and very affordable.

Where in OKC did you live ? I lived in Mustang for 15 years. Moved to Alabama in 1998. Worked for AT&T (Lucent).

:cool:

joeyd
03-03-2011, 05:25 PM
Where in OKC did you live ? I lived in Mustang for 15 years. Moved to Alabama in 1998. Worked for AT&T (Lucent).
:cool:

Actually lived in suburb of Edmond and worked in OKC at the OU Health Sciences Center until 1998. Loved the people, hated the heat and the ice storms.

Roaming Gnome
03-04-2011, 06:11 PM
Low key day yesterday and today, but game time is getting close... Yesterday, I passed on getting my Frog Legs and kind of cheated on "eating local" by getting burgers & shakes at Braum's Ice cream on the way out of OKC on the way down to Dallas. It's a chain, but at least a chain that isn't available in Indy. We were so hungry leaving OKC that we had to eat something before the hour & 1/2 drive down to Ardmore, OK for Frog Legs. So, by time we got to Ardmore.... eating again was the furthest thing from my mind.

Yesterday, our BBQ experience was pretty bad. We had to just find anything after the first two places we looked up were closed. So, we ended up at this place called Big Al's BBQ. It felt like we were at the King Ribs of BBQ here in Dallas. Not very good!!! Dry chicken, bland brisket & ok ham....

Today started off with meeting my old friend Jennifer Burns-Hair a friend I haven't seen seen since the summer of '95. I also got to meet her 2 year old at J. Pepe's Mexican Cantina. Food was good, but the highlight was watching her 2 year old put away some spicy hot Salsa better than us adults were doing.

We made it to the American Girl Doll store and purchased a Dallas shirt for my 9 year olds American Girl Doll..... My Daughter Morgan would have loved to have shopped at the American Girl Store.

Pretty Low Key today... But game time approaches and we are getting ready to walk down to the AAC and make our presence known!

Naptown_Seth
03-05-2011, 01:27 AM
1) I'm done with Delta after this trip. When you land at 5:30 with a 7:30 tip time in DFW on a Friday around rush hour the last think you want is to wait on your carry on luggage that you were forced to check. We ended up making it in plenty of time, but the entire day was constantly on the verge of disaster.

2) Remember warm weather? I didn't till today.

3) Remember how great it was to see Carlisle coach a team? Sigh

4) In an effort to bridge the gap between the teams I rocked the Detlef jersey, the greatest gift Dallas ever gave us.

5) Gnome is rowdier on the road than at home. :D


Some photos


Walking from the hotel to AA arena

http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l8/Naptown_Seth/Pacers%20at%20Dallas%202011/SImg_7944.jpg


http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l8/Naptown_Seth/Pacers%20at%20Dallas%202011/SImg_7950.jpg


http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l8/Naptown_Seth/Pacers%20at%20Dallas%202011/SImg_8007.jpg

http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l8/Naptown_Seth/Pacers%20at%20Dallas%202011/SImg_8028.jpg


The fat guy dancers are a pretty fun touch...
http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l8/Naptown_Seth/Pacers%20at%20Dallas%202011/SImg_8048.jpg

http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l8/Naptown_Seth/Pacers%20at%20Dallas%202011/SImg_8066.jpg

They did a Karate Kidd video which was a quick version of the film but with Jason Kidd's head put in place giant head/still photos style. Great.
They also did this Peanut Butter and Jelly dance video with similar still photo animation and it was also awesome...

http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l8/Naptown_Seth/Pacers%20at%20Dallas%202011/SImg_8081.jpg

Gnome and wife, Naptown, Paetz, Dohman...Dohman now lives in Dallas and per his thread he and his buddy were rocking some mocked up Area 55 shirts right behind the Pacers bench.
http://i92.photobucket.com/albums/l8/Naptown_Seth/Pacers%20at%20Dallas%202011/SImg_8116.jpg

Thanks to the Pacers TV team and PR for taking some time to say hi and speak with us for a bit after the game.


Oh, Gnome's rowdiness (I suspect) made the guy behind us ask him to remove the cowboy hat. :(
Gnome's rowdiness also had this sweet old lady turning around to taunt him after every Mavs score. She was actually pretty cool and said hey to us on her way out after the game. Good experience all around.

cdash
03-05-2011, 01:32 AM
I saw you guys on TV tonight. They showed Gnome and Seth, but I couldn't hear what Chris and Quinn were saying because I was at a bar. I saw dohman and his buddy a BUNCH on TV. Those homemade Area 55 jerseys stuck out really well.

Roaming Gnome
03-05-2011, 04:07 AM
<iframe title="YouTube video player" width="560" height="349" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/tGolAUbs1fA?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

BillS
03-05-2011, 11:30 AM
1) I'm done with Delta after this trip. When you land at 5:30 with a 7:30 tip time in DFW on a Friday around rush hour the last think you want is to wait on your carry on luggage that you were forced to check. We ended up making it in plenty of time, but the entire day was constantly on the verge of disaster.

That'd be right if it was just Delta, but I haven't been on an airline in the last year where someone wasn't at risk of having to check their carry-on. It is a consequence of going to those regional jets (though most of the plane-side carry-on check is actually faster), increasing passenger loads, and no-one wanting to check bags (cost and time). As a musician, the very thought of having to check my instrument(s) because they are out of room on the plane gives me the shivering heebie-jeebies, which is why I do everything I can to get to at least the lowest level elite Frequent Flyer - you get on first when there is still room. MOST of the time.

From Indy to Dallas, though, I'd have been awful tempted to fly Southwest (much as I tend to dislike them). No checked baggage fees so one assumes the on-board load is lessened, AND they fly into Love Field which is 1000% easier to get in and out of than DFW.

Hicks
03-05-2011, 11:42 AM
Eric already has the first one up. Here's a brief second one:

*edit* Well, I guess that got messed up. Stand by.

Hicks
03-05-2011, 11:48 AM
Okay, here it is:

<iframe title="YouTube video player" width="640" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/GNawVf5mQzU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Trophy
03-05-2011, 12:11 PM
1) I'm done with Delta after this trip. When you land at 5:30 with a 7:30 tip time in DFW on a Friday around rush hour the last think you want is to wait on your carry on luggage that you were forced to check. We ended up making it in plenty of time, but the entire day was constantly on the verge of disaster.


I had an issue with Delta and never flew with them again.

I was actually heading to Indy.

It was a dumb situation too. They cancelled a flight because they didn't have the 2nd pilot and kept saying for 4 hours that he was on his way.

A flight that was supposed to be leaving for Indy at 10AM was cancelled and I wound up leaving at around 8PM, IIRC.

Their crew was pretty rude about it.

Naptown_Seth
03-06-2011, 12:44 AM
Um...was this OUR fault??

Yeesh.


Inside scoop, we sat by Jeff all night since he keeps his back warm by standing and stretching and I can tell you that he's not having a good time at this point. Gnome gave him the "hey, better times are coming" and Jeff gave him the "are you kidding me" look. A Houston fan behind us said to him at one point "tough day at the office?" to which Jeff replied "a lot of them".

I felt pretty bad for him to be honest.


Also they didn't let me bring in my camera in due to the lens length. This is the lens I intentionally bought to meet what I thought were the NBA requirements. Turns out it can vary from arena to arena and go as short as 4 inches. Sucks because I have a shorter lens but didn't bring it with me, but why would I since I use this lens at Conseco all the time and just used it in Dallas.



Another side note - Denari's son just lost his HS tourney tonight. Chris was all prepped up for a special drive back from Toronto to see him in regionals. Bummer. Felt almost as bad for him as I did for Jeff.



Also expect to see a little vid of him talking to Gnome and I for his segment on fans across the map. He really couldn't be nicer. The team may be struggling but they have their act together when it comes to supporting the fans and promoting the team.



Oh, and Pappasitos was just as great as I remembered.

Maybe some photos tomorrow.

Hicks
03-06-2011, 01:19 AM
A couple more cameos tonight on FSN Indiana.

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Sookie
03-06-2011, 01:23 AM
Inside scoop, we sat by Jeff all night since he keeps his back warm by standing and stretching and I can tell you that he's not having a good time at this point. Gnome gave him the "hey, better times are coming" and Jeff gave him the "are you kidding me" look. A Houston fan behind us said to him at one point "tough day at the office?" to which Jeff replied "a lot of them".

I felt pretty bad for him to be honest.



I only watched Jeff Foster the past two seasons. So I haven't seen him at his best, obviously. But I can tell you that he's going to retire as one of my favorite players, period.

He can't physically do what a lot of guys can do, but he's a lesson in heart, intensity, and effort. Really wish he wasn't hurting like he obviously is.

pacer4ever
03-06-2011, 01:26 AM
I only watched Jeff Foster the past two seasons. So I haven't seen him at his best, obviously. But I can tell you that he's going to retire as one of my favorite players, period.

He can't physically do what a lot of guys can do, but he's a lesson in heart, intensity, and effort. Really wish he wasn't hurting like he obviously is.

So when Kemba gets draft are u gonna follw him more than AJ?

Sookie
03-06-2011, 01:40 AM
So when Kemba gets draft are u gonna follw him more than AJ?

No, I'll follow him to see what he's doing, but AJ's the only Uconn (guy) player in which I've actively followed the team he became a part of a basketball league.

Kemba in the pros should be interesting. Let's just say he's an awful lot like DC..the good and the bad...and he's smaller.

It's been fun to watch Kemba growup though.

pacer4ever
03-06-2011, 01:41 AM
No, I'll follow him to see what he's doing, but AJ's the only Uconn (guy) player in which I've actively followed the team he became a part of a basketball league.

Kemba in the pros should be interesting. Let's just say he's an awful lot like DC..the good and the bad...and he's smaller.

It's been fun to watch Kemba growup though.

Kemba is a much much much better scorer and has a quick/better release unlike DC.

But why do u like AJ so much?? and why no love for Rudy Gay or Emeka or Rip or Ben Gordon who won

Naptown_Seth
03-06-2011, 11:23 AM
No, I'll follow him to see what he's doing, but AJ's the only Uconn (guy) player in which I've actively followed the team he became a part of a basketball league.

Kemba in the pros should be interesting. Let's just say he's an awful lot like DC..the good and the bad...and he's smaller.

It's been fun to watch Kemba growup though.
I agree. He's one of those guys with great, sharp moves but also dominates all the offensive action and often plays out of control. He's a volume offensive player for better or worse, a star for a bad team with no other weapons who fills it up while the team loses.

OTOH, if he can mature and become more selective about his style he's clearly got the quickness and agility to score going to the rim.

Naptown_Seth
03-06-2011, 11:42 AM
Favorite 2 things about Houston's presentation:

1) Rowdy did a hilarious routine where he "sang" along to various pop songs while switching costumes to match the star. So you had the red leather for Beat It and him of course moonwalking and doing the mascot hip shake with the bouncy exaggerated waist, but then getting big laughs when Vogue kicked in and he ripped off his previous outfit to reveal the classic Madonna black teddy/whatever.

Very funny, played really well with the crowd.

2) The center scoreboard has rocket engines that lower out of it for the opening. They use those with some effects and the screens on the scoreboard itself to depict a rocket take-off at the end of the introductions. The engines smoke up and rise into the scoreboard while the screens show the "sides" of the rocket rising up.

Gnome has video of all this I think.

3) During the anthem the crowd cheers loudly at "rockets red glare" which IMO is completely bad a**.


I love the location of this arena, much better than the Summit, and the outside of the building looks good. Always nice when you can feature palm trees outside, at least to a Hoosier in FEB/March. :)

Seats were like cheap movie theater things complete with a maybe sticky floor. Not better than Dallas on the inside for sure.

cdash
03-06-2011, 11:48 AM
Favorite 2 things about Houston's presentation:

1) Rowdy did a hilarious routine where he "sang" along to various pop songs while switching costumes to match the star. So you had the red leather for Beat It and him of course moonwalking and doing the mascot hip shake with the bouncy exaggerated waist, but then getting big laughs when Vogue kicked in and he ripped off his previous outfit to reveal the classic Madonna black teddy/whatever.

Very funny, played really well with the crowd.

2) The center scoreboard has rocket engines that lower out of it for the opening. They use those with some effects and the screens on the scoreboard itself to depict a rocket take-off at the end of the introductions. The engines smoke up and rise into the scoreboard while the screens show the "sides" of the rocket rising up.

Gnome has video of all this I think.

3) During the anthem the crowd cheers loudly at "rockets red glare" which IMO is completely bad a**.


I love the location of this arena, much better than the Summit, and the outside of the building looks good. Always nice when you can feature palm trees outside, at least to a Hoosier in FEB/March. :)

Seats were like cheap movie theater things complete with a maybe sticky floor. Not better than Dallas on the inside for sure.

Yeah, I had partial season tickets to the Rockets last year when I was living in Houston and the in-game experience is really superior to the Pacers in nearly every way. I'm sure it doesn't hurt that they draw a lot more fans than us either. The intro like you said is really, really neat. The Rocket comes out and blows smoke during the intro. The intro itself (last year at leaast) was really cool. They went through this sort of time capsule of all the great Rockets teams that was really neat. The "rocket's red glare" is a neat touch. Rowdy is a great mascot too; much better than Boomer. He does funnier little bits that keep people entertained. As far as the actual arena is concerned, I wasn't wildly impressed. I think Conseco is a nicer venue than the Toyota Center.

HickeyS2000
03-06-2011, 12:49 PM
Yeah, I had partial season tickets to the Rockets last year when I was living in Houston and the in-game experience is really superior to the Pacers in nearly every way. I'm sure it doesn't hurt that they draw a lot more fans than us either. The intro like you said is really, really neat. The Rocket comes out and blows smoke during the intro. The intro itself (last year at leaast) was really cool. They went through this sort of time capsule of all the great Rockets teams that was really neat. The "rocket's red glare" is a neat touch. Rowdy is a great mascot too; much better than Boomer. He does funnier little bits that keep people entertained. As far as the actual arena is concerned, I wasn't wildly impressed. I think Conseco is a nicer venue than the Toyota Center.

I have half-season tickets to the Rockets this year and agree with everything said. Their in-game entertainment is much better but Conseco is a much nicer building. I've been to over half the NBA buildings and no building gets you as excited to watch basketball as Conseco does. We are truly blessed. Too bad I'm moving to Sacramento soon. Possibly no NBA for me.

Sookie
03-06-2011, 01:15 PM
Kemba is a much much much better scorer and has a quick/better release unlike DC.

But why do u like AJ so much?? and why no love for Rudy Gay or Emeka or Rip or Ben Gordon who won

1. You can't watch a kid almost die, fight his way back 2 years later to be an All American only to tear his ACL that season. Then come back the very next season after rehabbing his butt off to be the heart, soul, and best player on a Final Four team. (And, with the exception of Jeff Adrien and Kemba..who was an out of control and yet adorable freshman at the time, just about every other guy on that team was overrated.) and not have a lot of respect for the kid.

And that junior season he was a special point guard. He hasn't been fully healthy since though, and I'm hoping to see him get his health back.

2. AJ has every intangible you could possibly want in a PG. (Kemba Walker STILL talks to Price for leadership advice) And he's easily the smartest Uconn PG we've had. (For the men..and okay..that's not exactly that tough..but he's quite bright.)

I think a basketball player's mind is significantly more important than his or her talent, especially for a point guard.

3. He plays like Sue Bird. (You probably don't know her, but she's the reason I started watching basketball) It's scary at times, actually. She's more talented/skilled/and probably smarter.

I love Ray too..but I just can't follow the Celtics, the rest of the team is about the most unlikeable group of players...And I always loved Emeka..but it was for totally non basketball related reasons. ;)

Scot Pollard
03-06-2011, 02:29 PM
Ya'll must've taken some serious **** from the Houston fans.

Scot Pollard
03-06-2011, 02:30 PM
3. He plays like Sue Bird. (You probably don't know her, but she's the reason I started watching basketball) It's scary at times, actually. She's more talented/skilled/and probably smarter.

Who the hell is that?

Is that Larry Bird's daugher?

Roaming Gnome
03-06-2011, 07:43 PM
Man, there sure is some good eating down in the south. As I type this, I just had to loosen the drawstring on my sweats as we just finished at Nick's Catfish & BBQ Outside of Little Rock, AK. My god the portions were huge and the food was good. 4 Huge pieces of Catfish, a near half slab of ribs & 2 sides for only $12. I didn't have room for the Fried Chocolate Pie that I picked up to go.

Damn, I ate good on this trip!!!

Speaking of Toyota Center... There were a lot of things that I liked about the presentation and PA announcer for the Rockets like when there would be a converted "and 1" you'd hear an old film projector running and the P.A. announcer in his classic gravely voice "3 Points.... The Ol' Fashioned Way". Later, when that 4-point play happend, "4 Point play.... The ONLY way!!!" It was pretty cool.

The Rocket coming from the center scoreboard was awesome, I'll be posting that with the other starting line up videos from the other venues in the coming days.

Unclebuck
03-07-2011, 01:47 PM
So which arena did you like best? Where were the fans most into the game?

Roaming Gnome
03-07-2011, 02:54 PM
So which arena did you like best? Where were the fans most into the game?

I'll quickly have a tale of the tape on the 3 buildings but right off hand considering total package, I liked OKC best followed by Dallas then Houston. In OKC, I love the environment and atmosphere. Hell, you seen how we were getting beat down, but the fans were there behind their team not in an obnoxious way, but in a supportive way. Also, the building being constructed the way it is also lends to the noise level.

The Dallas crowd was the typical NBA crowd, but it was a close to Friday night sell out. The fans got really into it when the Pacers challenged, but other then that just applauded good good play by the Mavs.

In Houston, the crowd was very similar to what we'd currently see in the fieldhouse on a weekend. 40% in the balcony and about 70% in the lower bowl. The in-game presentation between the PA announcer and typical emcees was ok, but nothing earth shattering.

Let's see:

PA announcers:
My Favorite: Houston (Love the deep voice)
Lisa's Favorite: Houston

Asthetically pleasing Venue:
Lisa: Dallas (Likes being able to see everything, in all decks. Didn't care for Houston being so dark. Didn't care for all the portable seating in Houston)

Me: Toyota Center (For the exact opposite reasons of the focus being on the game with everything being dark. I also liked the Olajuwon jersey statue out in the arena's courtyard.)

Best Crowd:
Lisa: OKC

Me: OKC (not a sellout, but fans were behind their team. Also, we heard go Thunder for 2 days before the game.)

I'll also go on to say that the fans here were more likely to not make fun of us for getting blown out, but just said that the Thunder were looking to win after the 3 game losing streak.

Houston fans were not so gracious!

MagicRat
03-09-2011, 10:49 AM
Check out Denari's video blog on pacers.com. Interviews with Gnome and Seth. Classic!

http://www.nba.com/pacers/video/2011/03/08/overthemap110811mpg-1583951/index.html

El Pacero
03-09-2011, 01:14 PM
Check out Denari's video blog on pacers.com. Interviews with Gnome and Seth. Classic!

http://www.nba.com/pacers/video/2011/03/08/overthemap110811mpg-1583951/index.html

That was really really great!

BillS
03-09-2011, 02:04 PM
I think Chris almost said "Gnome" there at the end :)

Roaming Gnome
03-09-2011, 04:44 PM
I think Chris almost said "Gnome" there at the end :)
It wouldn't have bothered me if he would have... The whole thing was still a nice experience eventhough the team wasn't worth watching on 2 of the 3 games!

Naptown_Seth
03-13-2011, 01:18 PM
I think Chris almost said "Gnome" there at the end :)
Yeah, it's a little easier not to slip up on my name in that case.

I'm catching major flak for the "more money than time" comment from everyone at work and my wife. Maybe RG was too nice to say something but Sarah felt I went on and on about it.

To clarify, Gnome asked if I'd like to join him on the trip and I said there was no way I could afford the days off or time away from work in general even if I had the vacation days to burn. It was "cheaper" for me to fly in like this than to drive down with him.

But true to form I've apparently said something that comes off a lot different than intended. I've got a long history of this which includes one time p***** off Chris Cornell. Oh well.




On the two arenas I saw - Dallas was brighter and MUCH nicer in terms of seating. Concourse was similar to me, though I think Dallas had a more unique style. Houston location is cooler (really downtown rather than near downtown) and you can never go wrong with palm trees.

Gnome is right about the Hakeem thing, and I'll post some pix in a little while.

Houston had cooler interaction due to the rocket thing, the mascot skit I saw (I think the other 3 were all up getting beers at that point). And like Gnome I greatly prefer the darkened arena with only the floor lit ala MSA and MSG. If I could change one thing about Conseco it would be to dim the seating lights during game action.

Overall between the two it's a tough call. I guess I'll go Dallas because they weren't jerks about the lens length. Houston has the least tolerant limits on lens length, 4 inches full extended. So the special lens I bought just to meet Conseco rules was not allowed and I didn't bring a shorter lens with me to the arena to switch too.