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Painter likes playing in Conseco

Attendance isn't expected to be high when No. 19 Purdue plays Indiana State today at Conseco Fieldhouse.

That's what can happen when the Boilermakers had trouble scheduling an opponent for the Boilermaker BlockBuster.

No wonder the event is being replaced -- again.

When Gene Keady coached Purdue, the Boilermakers drew matchups against Louisville and Xavier in the BlockBuster but still had some lackluster opponents. Then came the Wooden Tradition, which featured mostly marquee matchups.

But with the Wooden no more and coach Matt Painter still wanting to play a game in Indianapolis during the regular season, the BlockBuster returned as a doubleheader with Purdue's women.

That likely will only be for this year, Painter said.

"This right here is just a transition in between the Wooden and the Crossroads (Classic)," Painter said this week. "So hopefully we can build some steam with the Crossroads with Notre Dame, Butler and Indiana and continue to play that. If not, we're going to have to think out of the box a bit and revisit this because we would like to play in Indianapolis every year."

Purdue also plays at Conseco for the Big Ten tournament.

Some published reports had 6,000 advance tickets being sold by mid-week for the BlockBuster.

Painter said he doesn't get "too worked up" about attendance.

"Five, six years ago when they hired our staff, I said, 'We have to do our part,' " Painter said. "I got a lot of complaints about the schedule, about the direction of the program. As a coach, I've got to do my part and we've got to put a good product on the court. We've got to go play hard. When you do those things, you're dealing with things you can control. I think we've played pretty hard here the past four, five years and we've done things the right way. That's all I can really control.

"I get consumed with the people who come to see us play. I don't get consumed with the people who don't come to see us play. ... I think the true Purdue fans that follow us are going to come to Mackey Arena and are going to come to Indianapolis. You live in Indianapolis and you're a Purdue fan, you want to see those games. I don't care if it's an intrasquad game, you should (want to) see Purdue and watch us play."

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