My Response: Dear Greg Cote,

Dear Greg Cote,

It’s always interesting to read the views from the opposing team’s camp. I can be objective. Sometimes I like to see the game from the other side of the court. Or, in your case…the other side of the solar system.

You’re the guy from the Miami Herald who accused Pacers fans of being racist for holding up cutouts of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade in bikini tops and LeBron with a bow on his headband. His “Aunt-Jemima style” headband. Which, funny enough…was the same headband he wears every game. Also, you may be getting “racist” and “sexist” mixed up. You may want to look into that. Personally, I thought it was funny. You may want to look into that too. A sense of humor is a good thing to have. Especially if you cover sports.

Already knowing your background, I chose to read your latest column anyway (my mistake). And somehow, you managed to shock me again. Referring to Lance Stephenson as “the ugly face” of the Pacers franchise. And someone who “gives one the impression that if his skills hadn’t put him in NBA clothes, his uniform by now might be an orange jumpsuit.” You know, I’ve gotta say…that sounds a little racist to me. Also, I don’t know how often you look down the Heat bench…but you’ve got a guy with a mohawk, covered in tattoos, who likes to refer to himself as Birdman (though he looks more like a Komodo dragon to me). If he doesn’t scream, “just escaped from prison,” I don’t know who does.

And then, there’s the Heat. Your team. “Composed. Professional.” Excuse me, is this a luxury car ad or a basketball story? You didn’t see LeBron take a few (well earned) jabs at Lance? Or how about Shane Battier and his crawly hands? Personally, I think pinching is way creepier than blowing in someone’s ear. But (I almost forgot), he went to Duke. You must buy into Jason Whitlock’s theory that there are “levels of buffoonery” based on education. Again, I think you’re stereotyping. Remember, it was you who flashed the race card. Not me.

Another thing I thought was interesting was your comment that it was “the Pacers against everybody else.” Like the entire NBA is united in its dislike of the Pacers. See, here’s the thing…no one has probably ever told you this, but it’s actually the other way around. You see, the fans of every team the Pacers beat along the way to the Eastern Conference Finals (and those they didn’t) all told us one thing: “Just beat the Heat.”

Unfortunately, they didn’t.

But this offseason, when you and your boys are at a polo match, wearing capris, drinking mint juleps, and talking poetry…my rough, dirty, unsophisticated Pacers are going to be busting their unwaxed backsides with one goal in mind: to beat the Heat. In the Eastern Conference Finals.

And one of these days, they’re going to do it.

In the meantime, good luck in the NBA Finals.

Just so you know, the whole world is pulling for the Spurs.

Those of us on Earth, anyway.



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