Want to watch great basketball in Indiana? Head towards Bankers Life Fieldhouse Indianapolis and connect with the Indiana Pacers who are members of the Central Division in the Eastern Conference of the National Basketball Association (NBA). The Pacers started off in 1967 as members of the American Basketball Association (ABA), becoming affiliated to NBA in 1976 as a result of the ABA-NBA merger. The team derives its name after Indiana's history with the Indianapolis 500's pace cars and with the harness racing industry.
The Pacers entire championship success was in the ABA years, firstly in 1970 and then in two consecutive years, 1972 and 1973. In 1970 the Pacers defeated the Los Angeles Stars 4-2; two years’ later, the Packers defeated the New York Nets by the same 4-2 margin. And finally in 1973 came the defeat of the Kentucky Colonels by 4-3.
Reggie Miller is thought of as the greatest Pacer of all time. A comment by then Team President makes interesting reading when he states that Miller’s competitive spirit, professionalism, class and leadership by example helped elevate this franchise to a whole new level in the NBA. Before he got here, the Pacers had been to the NBA playoffs twice in 12 seasons, eliminated in the first round both times. He left here not only with 15 playoff trips in his 18 seasons, but six trips to the Eastern Conference Finals and our only NBA Finals berth ever.
Jermaine O’Neal He blossomed on all fronts when he became an Indiana Pacer: He was a low-post threat who could score in the post and block shots with either hand. O'Neal can also be relied upon to get it going from mid-range. His all-around play prevented the Pacers from hitting rock bottom after prominent members of the 1999-2000 NBA Finals team left.
Rik Smits, known as the Dunking Dutchman, a decent rebounder and shot-blocker. However, he was more known for his sweet mid-range jumpers and semi-hook shots. What made Smits truly special was him being the man in the middle for Indiana during a 12-season span that saw the Pacers emerge from mere pretenders to legitimate championship contenders.
Dale Davis didn’t miss a start for the Pacers over ten seasons. His game revolved around rebounding as well as blocking or altering shots. However, Dale was more comfortable with close range shots, dunks and putbacks. His mid-range game was non-existent, and he was also a poor free-throw shooter (.562 for his career).
We musnt forget Point guard Mark Jackson known for his nifty assists, the trademark one-handed floater in the lane. And of course, there is his shimmy shake, otherwise known as the "Jackson Jiggle." Not to mention Olympic gold medallist Vern Fleming.
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