Before I get going, let me give a quick shout out to some new international readers. I've broken through to Canada (finally), Russia, and both of the former Czechoslovakia nations. Welcome aboard.
Surprisingly, this is the only picture I could find of the championship banners at Bankers Life Fieldhouse (nee Conseco Fieldhouse). I was really looking for a picture of just the three ABA banners, but apparently that does not exist on the internet. Next time I'm in the arena, I guess I'll have to do my best to fix that.
Anyway, as we talked about yesterday, the Pacers were and are known as the face of the ABA. Part of that was the stability that was thoroughly uncommon in the ABA. The other part of that would be the three championships, most of anybody in the league. There were two other championship appearances as well. Success breeds many things, and becoming the face is one of those things. It's probably not a coincidence that the guy who bagged Gaddafi was wearing a Yankees hat, as opposed to, say, the Mets or Cardinals. That was the Pacers of the ABA.
All that said, you might be forgiven if you didn't really notice it in the papers of the time. The Indianapolis News, I've concluded, had a lacking sports section when it came to the Pacers. For one, they won the championship during Indianapolis 500 season, which really hurt what would be devoted to the Pacers. Still, they found plenty of space to put in pictures of baseball players and golfers, and not a single picture of the Pacers in any of their three championships? Here, from the first title in 1970, we get all of three stories. The first is the only mention of the Pacers anywhere on the front page. As always, click on the stories for bigger versions.
You might want to come back to this post in a couple days when we move into the Indianapolis Star's coverage of the Pacers and a couple moments of glory they've had since joining the NBA. The difference is just astonishing. But, right now, I'm heading out to get some scans of another pivotal moment in Pacer history. See you then!