The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Sports Columns

May 2, 2014

Pacers welcome first Game 7 to Indy

Game 7.

The phrase bespeaks mystique, and no margin left for error. It is the ultimate crunch time. It is the final answer. The jury is finally coming in.

Game 7 suggests two teams who have endured good nights and bad, highs and lows, ups and downs. And the time has come at last for someone to say uncle.

Game 7 makes the matter clear to the Indiana Pacers. Win and go on, leaving everyone to admire how they revived themselves at the 11th hour. Lose and go home, leaving everyone to ask how it all fell apart.

Game 7 is graduation day, or expulsion.

Come today, there will be three of them in the NBA; at Indianapolis, Los Angeles and Oklahoma City. Three in one day. That has never happened before in league history.

While we're on the subject of unprecedented, know how many Game 7's Indianapolis has ever hosted as an NBA team?

None. Zero. Not in Bankers Life or Conseco or Market Square Arena. Not before Reggie Miller or during Reggie Miller or after Reggie Miller. This is a first, and there are not many chances to say that in the playoffs.

The Pacers have played in six of them on the road, and won twice — at Boston in 2005 and at New York in 1995. Matter of fact, Indiana owns nine percent of the Game 7 road wins in the annals of the NBA. There have only been 22, ever, and we're talking a postseason record book that goes back to 1947. Home teams are 92-22 in Game 7.

Why? Who can say for sure? The home team is the higher seeded, so it should win a majority of the time, but that can't explain how one-sided the statistic is. Perhaps the crowd is more zealous, the noise louder, the atmosphere more intense. Maybe Game 7 and all its trappings can get in a visitor's head.

Text Only
Sports Columns
AP Video
Manfred, Torre and MLB Take Ice Bucket Challenge Notre Dame Investigating 4 Football Players Manfred Elected Next MLB Commissioner As Probe Begins, Stewart Steps Away From Track Stewart Pulls Out of Race After Fatal Crash Phelps 'Looking Forward' to U.S. Nationals Alleged Head of Sports Doping Ring Arrested NBA's Spurs Hire Becky Hammon As Asst. Coach Phelps Signs With New Suit Company Michael Phelps Faces Grueling Comeback Test NFL Hall of Fame Welcomes Class of 2014 Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Judge OKs Record-setting $2B Sale of Clipper Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Broncos Owner Steps Down Due to Alzheimer's
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Should the Pacers match Portland's offer sheet to center Roy Hibbert?

Yes, Hibbert is important to the team and the community
No, four years and $58 million is too much
Not sure, I like Hibbert but think the money could be better spent elsewhere
     View Results