I'm Coming for You, Boyle
March 30, 2011
And so Mark Boyle, who hates it when people make a fuss over him, has (once again) managed to find a way to get people to make a fuss over him.
I have learned, much like some local TV stations learn their breaking news (by reading about it on the Internet) that tonight is Boyle's 2,000th game as the Pacers' radio play-by-play man.
May I add my humble congratulations to the thousands pouring in from around the globe. Has the White House called yet?
Not sure what the organization has in store to honor Boyle for showing up to work three or four days a week for six or seven months a year, but they'll probably hoist a banner to the rafters of Conseco Fieldhouse and give him a Bentley.
On this momentous occasion, I would like to take the opportunity to offer this heartfelt, sincere message: I'm coming for you, Boyle.
You see, I hit the scene the same year as Boyle, 1988. For seven seasons on the beat for The Indianapolis News and then the Star, I covered every single game with two exceptions (best friend's wedding and birth of son).
That gets me to 620.
Things are a little fuzzy from 1995 through 2000 (insert lifestyle-related punch line here). I briefly lost my mind and chose to become an assistant sports editor but quickly developed an allergic reaction to desks and ties and soon was spending as much time with the Colts as the Pacers.
Using a (very) conservative estimate of 25 games a year during that time, that brings me to 745.
In December of 2000, I joined Pacers.com and have covered every single home game since (with four exceptions, all related to family health emergencies). I've written about every road game (except those not televised, because I steadfastly adhere to the Journalistic Principle of refusing to write about a game I didn't see) but since I wasn't physically in attendance, I won't count those.
That brings me to 1,213, although there should be some kind of multiplier involved. I didn't have Slick there to do half my work for me all those years.
Technically, I'm 787 games behind Boyle in the standings, although I have absolutely no idea what the magic number might be.
Depending upon the depth of the Pacers' playoff runs, I should reach 2,000 by the year 2030.
Won't even begin to guess what the organization might have in store when that day comes. I can tell you this, though: I have absolutely no problem at all with people making a fuss over me.
Think they'll have a Bentley hovercar by then?