Tuesday, October 14, 2008 Updated: October 15, 8:09 AM ET
NBA FUN FACTS: INDIANA PACERS
Granger likes this guy. But, they have one key difference in personality.
[Ed's note: We're rolling out a 'Fun Facts' on every single NBA team before the season opens. To see more examples and for more information on the concept, please go here.]
The Indiana Pacers weren't exactly having fun last season—they finished 36-46 and lost longtime exec Donnie Walsh to the Knicks in the offseason. Still, they've got a couple of ballers hanging around, including the consistently-underdiscussed Danny Granger. Don't sleep on T.J. Ford either—dude may be one of the five fastest NBA'ers end-to-end. As for the offbeat tales of Indiana hoopsdom, well, here we go.
1. Newly acquired guard Eddie Jones has quite a few screen credits to his name. Jones was an original sponsor for Air Jordan, and he's done a few commercials for His Airness, but nothing tops his guest appearance in this Taco Bell ad.
2. Guards Brandon Rush, Marquis Daniels and Jarrett Jack all went to Mount Zion Christian Academy in Durham, NC. The school's most famous alum? Rockets star Tracy McGrady.
3. The team has two mascots. Boomer is a cat, and Bowser is a dog. Neither answers the age-old question: What exactly is a Pacer?
4. Boomer got into a little…ahem…catfight (ha! not at all) last season. A halftime free-throw contestant sued the mascot for improperly tackling him.
5. Danny Granger is a big Batman fan, and lists The Dark Knight as one of his favorite movies. But, like Bruce Wayne, Granger is afraid of bats.
6. Forward Stephen Graham's twin brother Joey plays for the Raptors. Both brothers are licensed pilots. Stephen played for the D-League Sioux Falls Skyforce in 2006 and 2007. Coincidence?
7. Coach Jim O'Brien is the son-in-law of Dr. Jack.
8. Larry Legend has a lot of passionate fans, but Eric James Torpy takes it to an extreme. Torpy changed his 2005 jail sentence from 30 to 33 years to match Bird's jersey.
9. Center Troy Murphylikes watching Elimidate. We're all only human.
10. People in Indiana are a smidge weird.