Retire jersey #45 in honor of player Rik Smits
This petition had 414 supporters
Rik Smits was The Indiana Pacers first draft pick, second overall, in the 1988 NBA draft. Rik played his entire career for the Blue & Gold. From 1989 to 1992 he wore the number 24, which was due to player Chuck Person already wearing Smits college number of 45. When Persons was traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves, Smits changed his jersey number to 45. Smits has career averages of 14.8 points, 6.1 rebounds, 1.4 assist and 1.3 blocks during an average of 26.6 minutes per game. Smits was voted into the All-Star game during the 1997-98 season as a reserve and tallied 10 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assist and 2 blocks in 21 minutes.
Smits also helped lead the Pacers to the NBA Finals during the 1999-2000 season. The Indiana Pacers won two division titles while he played and were consistently considered an Eastern Conference power throughout his playing career. They would of won more division titles had they not had the pleasure of competing against the Michael Jordan led Chicago Bulls for so many years. Rik Smits averaged 14.8 points, 5.2 rebounds, 1.3 assist and .9 blocks per game for his playoff career.
More than the years of consistent play and leadership Rik provided throughout his playing career, he has been a constant in the Pacers community since he retired. He regularly attends games and events the Pacers organization holds. He still lives in the greater Indianapolis area. Rik Smits exemplifies what the Pacers organization is about through his career and personal life. The Pacers are lucky to have drafted such a consistent and loyal player. We owe it to him as fans to do what we can to show the Indiana Pacers his jersey number of #45 deserves to be retired since he is one of the Pacers greats!
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