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Danny Granger to Host Lockout Dinner for Conseco Workers

Dwyane Wade provided the moment of the lockout so far for the players. During one heated negotiations meeting, Wade reportedly interrupted Commissioner David Stern to tell him, “Don’t point your finger at me. I’m a grown man. I have children.” This provides an apt metaphor for the entire impasse: a player standing up for himself in the face of power.

Well, now, Danny Granger has indicated that he might be the one to provide a signature moment for the non-players who will be affected by the NBA’s decision to cancel games. Yesterday, Danny tweeted that “All the workers at our arena are invited to dinner with me in Indianapolis….. Date to be announced soon.. A little #nbalockout gift.” He followed that up by posting, “Figured it’s the least I could do to help them out :/” (via Red’s Army)

I’m unsure what that smiley face thing means, but if Granger does hold this dinner, he may become the people’s champ. This lockout, of course, isn’t just hurting millionaire players and billionaire owners. There are blue-collar arena workers who may be displaced. There are team personnel that will likely be laid off. And there are all the local businesses (restaurants, bars, parking attendants, ticket resellers etc.) that may feel a big pinch to their wallets if the city loses 41 dates at Conseco.

Of greater interest to some may be the fact that Danny is increasingly putting himself into the center of lockout talks. He is offering to buy dinners for workers. He recently helped union President Derek Fisher call out JaVale McGee for running his mouth. And he received a litany of “hear hears” from the media last week when he posted a suggestion that “I say we play all the games Stern canceled for charity….”

I’m not sure what all this means, but Pacers fans should be encouraged that their team’s captain is starting to become a leading — and sensible — voice among his peers.

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