The knicks-pacers NBA Eastern Conference semifinal has Indiana native David Letter-man, who has worked in New York City for the past 20 years, torn. Impassioned as well, as evidenced by Dave's rave on the Late Show on May 24 concerning the Pacers of his youth. " Mel Daniels, Freddie Lewis, coach Bob Leonard, big George McGinnis, Kevin Joyce—who can forget Bob Netolicky?" Letterman asked, running down the lineup of the most successful franchise of the American Basketball Association, which operated from 1967 to '76. "That's when basketball was basketball."
We empathize with Dave's ache for a league defunct if never De-funked. The antidote is remembertheaba.com. (Remember, Dave, that's preceded by a "double-ya, double-ya, double-ya.") The site has the requisite team histories, statistics, FAQs, etc., but click first on "Only in the ABA," which captures the maverick league's spirit. Anecdotes abound, such as the tale of "John Brisker Intimidation Night." During the 1971-72 season Brisker, a Pittsburgh Condors forward with the body of a heavyweight champion, promised to lead the league in scoring and to knock out anyone who dared hinder his pursuit of that goal. In response the Utah Stars hired five professional boxers to stand guard when the Condors came to Salt Lake City. "Nothing happened at this game," the site concludes, "but it was an interesting spectacle anyway."
Top that, Reggie.