This was in 1999-2000, back before Indianapolis became a racist town. The Indiana Pacers, playing their first season at then-Conseco Fieldhouse, sold out every game.
This was in 2004-05, the season of The Brawl, but still well before Indy turned virulently racist. The Pacers averaged 16,994 fans per game and had more than 13,000 full season ticket holders or season-ticket-holder equivalents.
This was in 2008, before Indy’s latent, simmering racism reared its ugly head. The city, and the state, helped elect Barack Obama to the presidency of the United States, the first time Indiana had gone for a Democratic presidential nominee in decades.
Since then, we’ve become a bunch of hood-wearing, cross-burning racists who simply won’t show up to Pacers games because we don’t like black people. Or so it has been suggested by Colin Cowherd, an ESPN talk-show host who is generally the smartest guy out there and has always been extraordinarily kind to me. (So I’ll repay his kindness by trashing his argument. Shows you what kind of guy I am.)