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NYC vs. Indianapolis: A tale of two cities

Larry Johnson's four-point play propelled New York to

Larry Johnson's four-point play propelled New York to a big win, but Indiana's Reggie Miller may have had the best 8.9 seconds in playoff history. Credit: Newsday.com composite

Here's a quick refresher course on Tale of Two Cities. As Roderick Boone, Bob Glauber and the rest of out football team are breaking down the Jets-Colts AFC wildcard weekend game, we take a slightly more pop cultural look at the two cities involved.

So here we go with the everything-but-football comparison between Indianapolis and New York.

AUTO RACING CONNECTIONS

IndianapolisIndy 500
New YorkRiverhead Raceway

As much as we enjoyed the demolition derby and mini school bus figure 8 race when we were out there in Riverhead last summer, we know the Indianapolis 500 has a bit more cachet in the greater sports world.

Edge: Indianapolis

ENTERTAINERS NAMED EPPS

Indianapolis: Mike Epps
New YorkOmar Epps

When Mike Epps was unmasked as the other Doug in "The Hangover," we laughed. And we laughed at his pimp role in "How High?" with Method Man and Redman. His work in the two sequels to "Friday" was funny, but he never could outdo Chris Tucker's Smokey. And, if you'll remember correctly, Omar Epps was the only one man enough to stop a renegade Tupac Shakur in "Juice." As far as we're concerned, "GQ" still has the juice!

Edge: New York

LATE-NIGHT TV HOSTS

IndianapolisDavid Letterman
New YorkJimmy Fallon

Two words: What the heck is "Lick It for 10"? Seriously. Sorry, Jimmy. We liked "Slow Jamming the News" though.

Edge: Indianapolis

TOP MMA FIGHTER

Indianapolis: Chris Lytle
New York City: Matt Serra

Lytle and Serra have squared off twice. The first time, in The Ultimate Fighter 4's finale, Serra took down Lytle by the always-controversial split decision. Lytle came back at UFC 119 to top Serra in a unanimous decision in his hometown of Indianapolis. While Serra's career has seen more success, including that TUF championship, and a win over Georges St. Pierre for a brief run as the UFC Welterweight champion, there's no denying that the MMA is all about "What have you done for me lately?"

Edge: Indianapolis

FORMER BALTIMORE SPORTS TEAMS

IndianapolisBaltimore Colts
New YorkNew York Yankees

They still talk about March 29, 1984, when Baltimore Colts owner Robert Irsay and Indianapolis mayor William Hudnut arranged to ship out overnight from Baltimore. And rightfully so. It still remains the biggest middle finger to a city in sports franchise history. But, 81 years earlier, Baltimore lost its Orioles, and in 1903, we have the beginning of the New York Yankees, the winningest franchise in professional sports history.

Edge: New York

DETROIT PISTONS POINT GUARDS AS HEAD COACH

IndianapolisIsiah Thomas
New YorkIsiah Thomas

Thomas had an unsuccessful run as the head coach in Indiana, leading a perennial Eastern Conference playoff power to back-to-back-to-back first round exits. But at least the Pacers made the playoffs! If the former Piston was viewed as a failure in Indianapolis, what would his tenure in New York be considered? Trading picks for Eddy Curry in prospect-rich drafts, signing Jared Jeffries and Jerome James (Who?!) to extended contracts, and handicapping the Knicks, essentially from 2005 until this year.

Edge: Indianapolis

CLUTCH PLAYOFF BASKETBALL

Indianapolis: Reggie Miller
New YorkLarry Johnson

One of the greatest three-point shooters in the history of the game, there was a reason Reggie was dubbed the "Knick Killer." Cheryl's younger brother had arguably the most remarkable 8.9 seconds of any basketball game in history: late in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, with Indiana trailing, Miller scored eight points in the aformentioned span, leading the Pacers to a 107-105 win. Indiana would eventually win the series in seven, preventing New York from reaching consecutive NBA finals. Didn't Larry Johnson convert a four-point play in a conference final once?

Edge: Indianapolis

PRO WRESTLERS

Indianapolis: Johnny Weaver
New YorkChris Jericho

Weaver loses points because in the 1960s and '70s, the pro wrestling personalities weren't as over the top as they are now. But he is credited with being the first guy to use the sleeper hold in the squared circle, which is nice. But is it better than Y2J's Walls of Jericho? Negatron.

Edge: New York

APARTMENT HELPERS ON '70S AND '80S SITCOMS

Indianapolis: Schneider on "One Day at a Time"
New York: Adelaide on "Diff'rent Strokes"

Schneider, played Pat Harrington, had a first name on the show, but no one ever used it. Adelaide, played by Nedra Volz for four-plus seasons, had a last name, but again, who knew it besides those who wrote and read the scripts? Both were supporting roles and used for comedic relief on their shows. Schneider wore a mustache on the show, and we all know that you can't trust people with mustaches. Schneider was the superintendent in the building and had a crush on Bonnie Franklin's character. Adelaide was a live-in maid who cooked, cleaned and more the Drummond family on Park Avenue. Good qualities, sure, but Schneider could repair electrical and plumbing issues, and that's a big money saver. Anyone can make a sandwich and fold a shirt, right?

Edge: Indianapolis

SINGERS WITH THREE NAMES

Indianapolis: John Cougar Mellencamp
New York: De La Ghetto

Yes, Cougar was born in Seymour, not Indianapolis. And yes, Cougar has dropped the "Cougar" from his on-stage moniker. Still, Mellencamp's "little diddy" has a permanent spot in both our hearts, and, less conveniently, our ears. While De La Ghetto is huge on Billboard's Latin charts, he hasn't yet been dissed by 50 Cent. Ipso facto, he hasn't yet made it.

Edge: Indianapolis

FAMOUS CONTEMPORARY AUTHOR

Indianapolis: Kurt Vonnegut
New York: Joseph Heller

Vonnegut's works include Slaughterhouse-Five, Cat's Cradle, Breakfast of Champions and Jailbird. Heller's known primarily by his Catch-22, which was so influential, it wound it's way into our day-to-day lexicon. We're no literary critics; whoever penned Vonnegut's Wikipedia entry, though, must be. His biography opens by saying Vonnegut "was one of the most influential American writers of the 20th century." No, it's not sourced, but that's enough for us.

Edge: Indianapolis

TALLEST LANDMARK

Indianapolis: Chase Tower
New York: Empire State Building

Hmmm. The Chase Tower, formerly known as the Bank One Tower, is 830 feet tall. It's total floor area is nearly 1 million square feet. It is the 38th tallest building in the United States, the 170th tallest building in the world, and the second tallest building called the Chase Tower. The Empire State Building, built 60 years earlier and nearly twice as tall, isn't impressed.

Edge: New York

BASKETBALL CAREER PINNACLE

Indianapolis: Ron Artest and Chris Mullin on the Pacers
New York: Ron Artest and Chris Mullin on the Red Storm

Years after making the flattop famous, Mullin hit Indianapolis for a late-career stint with the Pacers. Lasting less than 200 games, Mullin averaged under 10 points, a far cry from his days at St. John's, when he was named the top college basketball player in the New York City area three years in a row. Artest also enjoyed some less-than-memorable years with the Pacers; his stint coming prior to his glory years. The Storm product's most memorable moment was a fight with a fan at the Palace of Auburn Hills during arguably the most infamous brawl in NBA history. While his college career didn't quite match up to Mullin's, scouts compared him to Mullin before draft day, and he was good enough to be taken 16th overall by the Chicago Bulls after two years in NYC.

Edge: New York

'80S AND '90S R&B IMPRESARIOS

IndianapolisBabyface
New YorkTeddy Riley

Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds was so successful as an artist and producer, there's a stretch of highway in Indy named after him. No roads in Harlem or elsewhere in New York are named after Riley, but he has far more competition. Riley gave us Kool Moe Dee's "Go See the Doctor" in 1986. Then he gave us the New Jack Swing music movement, which can be heard throughout the early 1990s. The best song Michael Jackson's "Dangerous" album was "Remember the Time." Riley produced it. We could fill up two or three Internets with more of Riley's influences and credits, so we'll stop right here. No diggity. No doubt. (Yeah, that was him, too.)

Edge: New York

LEGENDARY SANDWICH PEOPLE

Indianapolis: Jared Fogle
New York: The Katz Family

Jared Fogle, aka "The Subway Guy," got rich on getting skinny by eating sandwiches from Subway. We applaud both the health and capitalism angles. His longevity as a pitchman for one company (10 years) is more impressive than Peyton Manning's consecutive starts streak (12 years, 192 games). Katz's Deli was started by a Russian family in 1888 on the Lower East Side. It's still there, and every New Yorker has a story about that place. You can "Send a salami to your boy in the Army" or just have what Meg Ryan was having. They filmed that scene from "When Harry Met Sally" there.

Edge: New York

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