Slick Leonard discusses scary fall on ice, return to the broadcast booth

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Slick Leonard remembers the fall very clearly that not only took him away from the job he loves for nearly 12 weeks, but also could have taken his life.

"It had shattered my left hip, so it was get up or die," Leonard said.

Slick chose to move.

"Get up or freeze to death. So I got up."

The Pacers legend accidentally left his car in drive when parking it; the car started to roll backwards and when Slick tried to chase it down, he slipped on the ice and fell hard, shattering his hip.

"It was rolling and luckily about 25 feet away there was a snow drift so the car didn't get hurt at all, but I fell."

He managed to pull himself up, get into his car and drive three miles home before being taken to the hospital.

It has understandably taken some time for the hall of famer to recover from the fall.

"At my age, which is ancient," Slick joked. "It takes 3-5 months for rehab."

But now, Slick is more than thankful to be back to the game, broadcasting for the Blue and Gold aside his play-by-play partner Mark Boyle.

"In my life, outside of a couple years in the military, I've been in basketball the whole time. You know, you get away from the game and you miss it. I missed it."

And it's fitting that Slick's first game back to the broadcast booth was the game that the Pacers clinched a berth in the 2018 playoffs, and there's no better time for the legend to return to the call than right now.

"I probably could have waited longer," the former Pacers head coach said. "But I knew that that night they could make the playoffs. And I wanted to see them make the playoffs. And they did."

As for the Pacers chances in the postseason, Slick feels as if they can surprise some people, just as they've done all year long.

"I think they can pull off an upset in the first round, but then after that it gets tough."

But regardless of the postseason road ahead, the "boom babies" are back for a team that the longtime Hoosier feels is pretty special.

"People really enjoy this team. Going back to the 90s with Reggie, when we were playing the New York Knicks in the playoffs all the time, this has been the most enjoyable team." Leonard admitted. "It's been an exciting year."

The Pacers face the Hornets in their final regular season game Tuesday at home.

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