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Thread: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

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    Default 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    http://blogs.thescore.com/tbj/2010/1...co-fieldhouse/
    Posted by Trey Kerby under 60/30, Indiana Pacers on Nov 15, 2010

    Andrew Unterberger, TBJ’s traveling hoops correspondent, is somewhere in the Midwest, sending out his reports. Here’s the latest…

    I got to Indiana a day early from Cleveland, and was able to catch most of the Thursday night games on TNT the night before I saw the Pacers play the Rockets at Conseco Fieldhouse. (I spend two months touring NBA arenas, and what do I start itching to be able to do again? Watch nationally televised hoops games at home. Sickening.) But at least I had the whole next day to spend in Indiana, and it was an absolutely beautiful day in the Midwest, a crisp, sunny 72, which I started off with a Hoosier tenderloin and root beer at the Mug n Bun Drive-In. (Under-utilized concept on the East Coast, the drive-in restaurant — it’s like having a picnic without having to abandon the creature-comforts of being indoors.)

    On the advice of my friend Kyle, I swung by Lucas Oil Field, the Colts’ stadium (“Warrants at least one ‘ Holy hell is that huge,’” said he) and Hinkle Fieldhouse, home arena for the recent NCAA darling Butler Bulldogs. No kidding about Lucas Oil, which was being used for some sort of national Bands of America competition, turnout for which seemed better than for that of the Pacers game. Hinkle Fieldhouse was cooler, not only because I was able to go inside and take some pics (gorgeous hardwood court, fantastic color scheme), but because there was also free entertainment to be had by way of a nearby Butler soccer game, against heated Horizon League rivals Cleveland State. A perfect day to soak in a half of the other round-balled sport, though it was a bit of a culture shock after watching so many live hoops games — after CSU scored a goal, my neck reflexively craned to the non-existent JumboTron for a replay.

    The whole day was a great appetizer for a Friday night hoops showdown, at a stadium that had been hyped to me as one of the best in the NBA.




    The Stadium: Upon stepping into Conseco Fieldhouse, I instantly understood the acclaim. The entry pavilion designed to look like a train station, there was immediately a sort of personality, a distinctiveness that most of the other stadiums I’d visited so far couldn’t seem to have cared less about conveying. Even with the potentially-gimmicky train station motif, the whole thing still looked organic, old-school even, like a stadium that had already lived through several generations of Pacer fans. So many of the other East-Coast arenas seemed intent on pushing a kind of forced modernity that this low-key, high-character stadium felt like Wrigley or Fenway by comparison.

    Once I got inside and started to walk around a little, I found that the stadium’s interiors were even more impressive. There were your requisite concession stands, swag shops and kid-attractions, but surrounding all of them was this pervasive sense of history. There were countless displays of Pacer cultural artifacts — classic uniforms, old newspaper clippings, signed photographs, just about everything short of Roger Brown and George McGinnis offering handshakes outside the men’s bathroom. It was educational, it was visually compelling — “Like a museum,” a fan named Bob sitting behind me at the game aptly put it. When Bill Simmons (60/30 Sports Guy Reference Counter: 2) suggests that the Basketball Hall of Fame rightly belongs in Indiana, this is why.

    But the best part, without a doubt, was the gift shop. I hesitate to use a word like “breathtaking” to describe an NBA souvenir stand, but I legitimately emitted a gasp or two when I walked into the Conseco Home Court. I’d been so roundly disappointed with the selection at most of the stadiums thus far — most notably the Stuckey Jerebko Stuckey Jerebko Stuckey Jerebko spread at Auburn Hills — but the Home Court had an obscene array of hats, jerseys and paraphernalia. The jersey spread was particularly impressive — not only every current player you could possibly want, but a fantastic retro section, dating back to the ABA days and even including a Celtics Bird throwback. (Interestingly, though, no repping for any of the Palace Brawl-era players — wounds still too fresh on that one I think.)

    I was like a kid in a tan-colored candy store. I’ve never even rooted for the Pacers that much, but I still could have dropped a couple hundred bucks in that place without batting an eye.


    The Game: The Pacers were taking on an unfortunately short-handed Rockets squad, with both Aaron Brooks and Yao Ming out with injury. (The latter was especially a shame, considering I’ve still never seen the Great Wall live and was looking forward to marveling at his grandiosity.) Still, the Rockets were probably the deepest 1-6 team in the NBA, and put up an impressive fight, keyed around an impressive offensive outburst from Indy native Brad Miller (23 points, 8 rebounds), whose succession of top-of-the-arc threes garnered a lot of sarcastic enthusiasm from the crowd. (“You can’t STOP that!!“)

    It was especially for me cool to see the Pacers’ Roy Hibbert in action. The third-year big man from Georgetown has done an impressive job of growing into his own skin, and he was beautiful to watch go to work in the post. “With his size and touch around the hoop,” Pacers blogger Jared Wade of Eight Points, Nine Seconds told me, “There are simply some plays where, if he makes his move properly, not even Bill Russell could cause him to miss.” Couldn’t agree more. Once he got in deep, it seemed like Hibbert was playing himself more than playing his defender — either his shots went in or they didn’t, but he was controlling his own destiny, and the opposing big was basically helpless. This guy could absolutely be an all-star before too long.

    The game stayed exciting basically the whole way through, with the Pacers frequently falling behind, then surging back on a barrage of threes from Mike Dunleavy, James Posey and even TJ Ford. (I imagine this kind of pacing is not infrequent for a team like the Pacers this season.) They were within a three in the game’s waning seconds, but Shane Battier mummified Danny Granger at the top of the arc (as he had done all evening — fun guy to watch play D), and he was forced to give it up to Darren Collison for a well-off-the-mark three. Final score: Rockets 102, Pacers 99.


    The Fans: The turnout wasn’t fantastic, especially at first, and a scalper named Slick who I talked to outside of the stadium said that this was a recurring problem (“We didn’t make a dime,” he bemoaned of the Pacers’ recent home victory over the Nuggets. “One of the worst nights we had in two years.”) but it was still better than most of the East stadiums I’d visited so far. And while the energy was a little lacking in the early going (all the Pacers’ players pre-recorded cries for the fans to get on their feet and/or make some noise fell on deaf ears), it really picked up as the game went on, and in the final minutes, it got legitimately impressive, with the fans getting whipped into a frenzy over every unwarranted whistle or foul call, living and dying with every made/missed three.

    Everyone I talked to insisted that things were getting better, too. “Three years ago, there was barely anybody here,” a longtime fan named Ravi told me. “I think the Pacers are starting to do a good job of making sure the players have character. We just didn’t like the players that we had.” His friend Bob, an ex-Pennsylvania resident who was bowled over by the local passion for basketball upon moving to Indiana, believed it was only a matter of time. “If they get a basketball team like they had with Reggie Miller, it’ll come back to that [fan level]. It’s that basketball heritage.”

    Ultimately, it seemed like those in attendance at Conseco were coming back around to the team, built around guys like Collison (“He gon’ be on it for the future,” said Slick), Granger (“I suspect he’ll be an All-Star this year,” said Ravi) and Hibbert. “The fans finally have some promising young, high-character players who can actually get out on the break and dunk and stuff to root for,” said Jared. ” That hasn’t been the case for a long time and as the W-L record starts to improve over the next year or two, I think the fans will be back. It’s Indiana after all.”


    Most Popular Jerseys: Quite a spread for the current players — almost everyone on the team was represented by at least one person, including Dahntay Jones, TJ Ford and even AJ Price — but Tyler Hansbrough probably had the most of all. And for the retro, still no ****ing with Reggie.

    Local Pop Culture Tie-Ins: An absolute no-brainer — before the Pacers prepped for their final possession, they played the famous “I’ll make it” huddle scene from the climax to Hoosiers. Frankly, I’m amazed they had the restraint to show it only the one time.
    Also Worth Noting: Two complaints, quite literally my only complaints from my visit to Conseco, minus the team losing anyway. First, the building had its own sort of specifically demarcated cheering section, where a number of particularly passionate (and possibly monetarily compensated?) fans led countless player-specific chants and tried unceasingly to get the rest of the crowd pumped up. They had one of these in Detroit, too, and to me it just seems tacky, and a tad bit desperate — if you can’t get that kind of college-type atmosphere at your home park organically, trying to force it like this isn’t an acceptable substitute.

    The second is about Boomer, the Pacers’ blue feline mascot. Not necessarily terrible, but the more of these mascots I see, the more I’m thinking that if your team name doesn’t have the name of a person or animal in it, it’s probably best just to forgo the mascot element altogether.
    Swag Acquired: I got a #50 Hansbrough home jersey from the half-off rack. Probably should have gone with Hibbert instead, but I was able to justify this one more by reminding myself how much the Psycho T duds would **** off my UNC-hating roommate.
    Sirius / XM Jam of the Day:

    N.O.R.E. – “Nothin’” (Hip Hop Nation, XM 67). Fantastic Neptunes-produced holdover from the early 00s, the golden age of Eastern-influenced hip-hop. Notable for being the only rap song in history to reference both Creed and Smash Mouth.

    Coming soon: My visit to the United Center, to catch the Bulls play the Wizards in a match-up of Calipari-weaned, #1-pick point guards. Hoping the rest of the guys just chill on the sidelines and let these guys go one-on-one for at least a quarter or so.

    Thought this was great to see anothers opinion who is not from/lives in Indianapolis
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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Not to mention his speculation that Area 55ers get paid to cheer.

    Also Worth Noting: Two complaints, quite literally my only complaints from my visit to Conseco, minus the team losing anyway. First, the building had its own sort of specifically demarcated cheering section, where a number of particularly passionate (and possibly monetarily compensated?) fans led countless player-specific chants and tried unceasingly to get the rest of the crowd pumped up. They had one of these in Detroit, too, and to me it just seems tacky, and a tad bit desperate — if you can’t get that kind of college-type atmosphere at your home park organically, trying to force it like this isn’t an acceptable substitute.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    I love the Fieldhouse.

    That's what really gets me excited when I come to Indy to see the Pacers is stop by the Fieldhouse.

    Definitly the nicest arena I've ever been to and it's probably one of the nicest in America.

    Attendance has risen.

    Hopefully in the near future the Pacers will represent it well in some playoff matchups.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by duke dynamite View Post
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    Not to mention his speculation that Area 55ers get paid to cheer.
    LOL

    I forget to include the comments section, but a couple members of Area 55 ripped the author for that comment

    Check out the link
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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by Trophy View Post
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    I love the Fieldhouse.

    That's what really gets me excited when I come to Indy to see the Pacers is stop by the Fieldhouse.

    Definitly the nicest arena I've ever been to and it's probably one of the nicest in America.

    Attendance has risen.

    Hopefully in the near future the Pacers will represent it well in some playoff matchups.
    Yeah its too bad the writer wzasnt here back when Reggie and company where killing it

    MSA was like a freakin sonic boom
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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by duke dynamite View Post
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    Not to mention his speculation that Area 55ers get paid to cheer.
    For me I didn't go there to try to get the rest of the crowd to cheer. Sitting in other sections its obvious that those people are gonna stay quiet outside of very cruical moments in the game. I'm there because it was the most fun area to me and I knew there would be good excited fans. I love to get loud and in that special demarcated and monetarily compensated section I get to do that without people staring at me flabbergasted that I would make noise at a sporting event.
    If he really believes Area 55 deserves complaints then he's grasping at straws. Its a cheering section to me, not my job to inorganically force an atmosphere to those unwilling to participate. How is it tacky to enjoy a game like this? Because other people don't want to?

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by tfarks View Post
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    For me I didn't go there to try to get the rest of the crowd to cheer. Sitting in other sections its obvious that those people are gonna stay quiet outside of very cruical moments in the game. I'm there because it was the most fun area to me and I knew there would be good excited fans. I love to get loud and in that special demarcated and monetarily compensated section I get to do that without people staring at me flabbergasted that I would make noise at a sporting event.
    If he really believes Area 55 deserves complaints then he's grasping at straws. Its a cheering section to me, not my job to inorganically force an atmosphere to those unwilling to participate. How is it tacky to enjoy a game like this? Because other people don't want to?
    You guys have to kill the other fans when they come to Conseco

    Towell waving , screaming, jokes etc.
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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by 90'sNBARocked View Post
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    LOL

    I forget to include the comments section, but a couple members of Area 55 ripped the author for that comment

    Check out the link
    lol i know a couple of them lol funny ****

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by tfarks View Post
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    For me I didn't go there to try to get the rest of the crowd to cheer. Sitting in other sections its obvious that those people are gonna stay quiet outside of very cruical moments in the game. I'm there because it was the most fun area to me and I knew there would be good excited fans. I love to get loud and in that special demarcated and monetarily compensated section I get to do that without people staring at me flabbergasted that I would make noise at a sporting event.
    If he really believes Area 55 deserves complaints then he's grasping at straws. Its a cheering section to me, not my job to inorganically force an atmosphere to those unwilling to participate. How is it tacky to enjoy a game like this? Because other people don't want to?
    I get very loud at away games just to get the home fans mad.

    The Bobcats actually had a sellout on their opening night when we played them and it was still dead silent the whole game. No matter how obnoxious that PA announcer got, could not seem to bring much life into the arena until the closing minutes of the game when it got close.

    I stood up yelling by head off chanting on the Pacers. Between a "Josh McRoberts" clap x5 chant to chanting defense. I'm sure I was clearly heard on the opposite end of the arena. Those fans hated me. Someone in front of me and screamed "Lets Go Bobcats!" so then I yelled right back "Lets Go Pacers!"

    People booed me in, but when the game was over, it was a whole different story.

    When I'm in Indiana however for Pacers home games, I'm much more quiet because there's already a bunch of fans chanting for the Pacers and I'm not in any kind of chanting competition with anyone.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Pretty interesting read, his take on the fans not getting too worked up until the final minute is very apt. I find it very depressing. You can't get half the arena to stand up for the 4th qtr. cheer. Heck most of the time you can't even tell if the people in the lower bowl are Pacer fans or not. Its like did they just have to get some tickets against their own will. I know alot of companies buy season tickets in the lower bowl. So I'm sure there are alot of folks there just entertaining a client. My girl got us suite tickets several times over the last couple of years just because the sales people didn't want to go and have to take a client with them or the clients turned them down!

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    I think with the addition of MG as PA announcer, he brings a lot of energy into the arena without getting obnoxious. When the Pacers are playing well, he yells out "Pacers Fans Make Some Noice!" That usually gets the crowd louder.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by Trophy View Post
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    I get very loud at away games just to get the home fans mad.

    The Bobcats actually had a sellout on their opening night when we played them and it was still dead silent the whole game. No matter how obnoxious that PA announcer got, could not seem to bring much life into the arena until the closing minutes of the game when it got close.

    I stood up yelling by head off chanting on the Pacers. Between a "Josh McRoberts" clap x5 chant to chanting defense. I'm sure I was clearly heard on the opposite end of the arena. Those fans hated me. Someone in front of me and screamed "Lets Go Bobcats!" so then I yelled right back "Lets Go Pacers!"

    People booed me in, but when the game was over, it was a whole different story.

    When I'm in Indiana however for Pacers home games, I'm much more quiet because there's already a bunch of fans chanting for the Pacers and I'm not in any kind of chanting competition with anyone.


    That is funny you say that

    A couple years ago I attend the pacers vs Magic game in Orlando and I was screaming "Dwight got nothing on Big Roy" and he was killing them that game and I almost got into a little tit for tat with the MAgic fans
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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by graphic-er View Post
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    Pretty interesting read, his take on the fans not getting too worked up until the final minute is very apt. I find it very depressing. You can't get half the arena to stand up for the 4th qtr. cheer. Heck most of the time you can't even tell if the people in the lower bowl are Pacer fans or not. Its like did they just have to get some tickets against their own will. I know alot of companies buy season tickets in the lower bowl. So I'm sure there are alot of folks there just entertaining a client. My girl got us suite tickets several times over the last couple of years just because the sales people didn't want to go and have to take a client with them or the clients turned them down!
    BY the way my man did you see your boy get the start in Utah last night?

    Heyward played 22 minutes , no turnovers and shot 2-4 , not bad
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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by 90'sNBARocked View Post
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    Heyward played 22 minutes , no turnovers and shot 2-4 , not bad
    Not good, either.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by Day-V View Post
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    Not good, either.
    LOL

    at least it was "mistake free"
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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by 90'sNBARocked View Post
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    LOL

    at least it was "mistake free"
    was he mistake free on defense ??

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by pacer4ever View Post
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    was he mistake free on defense ??
    no he had 8 steals and 7 blocks

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    “With his size and touch around the hoop,” Pacers blogger Jared Wade of Eight Points, Nine Seconds told me, “There are simply some plays where, if he makes his move properly, not even Bill Russell could cause him to miss.”
    If Bill Russell were called on to guard Hibbert 15 to 20 feet from the rim, this might be true.

    Otherwise, I have no idea what he is referring to here. On occasion, Roy makes a good move in the low post, but his feet are rarely in a position that gives him the leverage needed to either make a strong move to the rim or to have good balance and touch on his baby hook, which is probably why O'Brien doesn't like him to be in the low post much. Of course, if he is not in the low post much, he will never fully develop the footwork required to be effective there, either, which will limit his upside potential in my opinion.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    How could he not like Boomer? I understand he doesn't exactly represent a "Pacer" in any way, but he's always entertaining and fun to be around. Some of my best memories are from MSA when he was still allowed to come down from the ceiling, upside down, for pre-game. Which was of course followed by "Starting at Guard, 6 foot 7 from UCLA.....RRRRRRRReggieee Miiiiiilleeeeerrrrr!" Good times... I miss those days.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by Indra View Post
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    How could he not like Boomer? I understand he doesn't exactly represent a "Pacer" in any way, but he's always entertaining and fun to be around. Some of my best memories are from MSA when he was still allowed to come down from the ceiling, upside down, for pre-game. Which was of course followed by "Starting at Guard, 6 foot 7 from UCLA.....RRRRRRRReggieee Miiiiiilleeeeerrrrr!" Good times... I miss those days.
    He's Pacer colored and yeah I don't know how anyone can't like Boomer.

    He's a fun mascot and he was said to be the best mascot I think.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by Trophy View Post
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    He's Pacer colored and yeah I don't know how anyone can't like Boomer.

    He's a fun mascot and he was said to be the best mascot I think.
    One of the highlights of going to the games for me was when we played the Suns in 2006, the game we retired Reggie's jersey. My cousin and I were in a suite enjoying the game (even though we lost) when Boomer came in and gave us all high-fives and hung out for a few minutes before moving on. It was great fun

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by Trophy View Post
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    He's Pacer colored and yeah I don't know how anyone can't like Boomer.

    He's a fun mascot and he was said to be the best mascot I think.
    Utah Jazz have the best mascot the guy is nuts.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by pacer4ever View Post
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    Utah Jazz have the best mascot the guy is nuts.
    Bango. End of discussion.

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    I agree with his take on the cheering section.
    Spoiler Spoiler:

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    Default Re: 60/30: No. 6, Conseco Fieldhouse

    Quote Originally Posted by pacer4ever View Post
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    Utah Jazz have the best mascot the guy is nuts.
    I didn't even know they have a mascot.

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