HoopsHype Jeff Pendergraph rumors

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It was also a complicated decision, with a complex back story, one that tests the traditional definitions of blood and family. “I didn't know who my dad was until I was a senior in high school,” Jeff Ayres said Wednesday, during a break from pickup games as the Spurs' practice gym. He was born Jeff Orcutt, using his mother LaDona's maiden name, and became Pendergraph in elementary school when she married. Growing up in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., 45 miles east of Los Angeles, the future Jeff Ayres dreamed that his biological father was someone famous, like Denzel Washington or Shaquille O'Neal. A doctor. A musician. Somebody who was somebody. “It turns out it was a mechanic named James,” Ayres said. San Antonio Express-News

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With Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals long decided and the bench players running out final moments of the Heat’s win over the Pacers, Norris Cole and Jeff Pendergraph were ejected. NBCSports.com

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The ritual stems as much from Jeff Pendergraph's inkling for improvisation as it does rehearsed choreography. Most nights, he admits, he hasn't a clue what he's about to do. You've seen it — the Pacers circling around Pendergraph, the third-year reserve forward, while he bounces and dances and screams in the final moments before tip-off. The idea? His energy becomes their energy. "As soon as everyone gets around me, I just snap," said Pendergraph. So, what exactly is it that he shouts? "I can't even tell you. I don't even know myself." USA Today Sports

So each Pacers game begins with Pendergraph in the middle, shouting and dancing and revving up his teammates. He's been doing it since his high school days in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. His teammates grew to love it, so he brought it with him to Arizona State. Five years later, it's with him in the NBA. "It ties in everything we go through and what coach preaches," said reserve Orlando Johnson. "Pendy just loses it. It's not scripted. ... It's all from the heart." USA Today Sports

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Indiana Pacers power forward Jeff Pendergraph spent all of last season having to watch NBA games after tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. He is back watching again because of a problem with that same knee. But he's not dealing with another ACL injury. Pendergraph has been sidelined for the past week with a mild sprain in the knee, suffered when he injured it during a Dec. 10 practice. He'll likely be out until the start of the regular season. "We're hoping to have him ready for opening night (Dec. 26 against Detroit)," Pacers coach Frank Vogel said. "This is not due to his previous injury." Indianapolis Star

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