In another thread, sweabs mentions how the owner of the Toronto Maple Leaves has built a profitable and well-loved tradition out of a team that is perpetually out of the top ranks.
Here's that post. Here's an edited version:
The Leafs rely on the natural Canadian affinity for hockey. Is there still a Hoosier affinity for basketball? If yes, how can the Pacers use it?
- What if the Pacers always wore throw-back short shorts?
- What if they built an offense that relied on passing and open Js?
- What if they used a tenacious press defense?
- What if they perennially had the most balanced payroll in the NBA?
- ...and one of the smallest payrolls, too?
- What if they relied on rookie/young players more than other teams?
- What if they left out the hip-hop culture?
- What if they made it a point of honor to always have at least one Hoosier boy or Indiana college product on the roster?
Would any of these things help to build a fan loyalty that could survive years of losing?
If Toronto can do it, why can't Indianapolis?