I love my New York Knicks.

But those hefty MSG and New York City prices, eh, not so much.

That’s what prompted this little adventure on a budget that my friend Frank and I cooked up.

At the time, the Knicks were up 2-0 against the Indiana Pacers in a Round 2 series.

Tickets to get into MSG are exorbitant.

Just look at this:

As a Knicks diehard for over 20 years, this is the most exciting time in my adult fandom. Ditto for my buddy Frank.

But we weren’t about to let a little $1,500 price tag for decent seats at MSG stand in the way of seeing All-Star Jalen Brunson and the rest of this tireless Knicks team work their magic in person.

Especially after two decades of basketball irrelevancy in New York.

So, we said, let’s go behind enemy lines. Let’s fly out to Indiana. We were sure the Knicks could use some cheering out in the Midwest, anyway. Maybe we could be the ones to fire up the team up just enough and propel them to 3-0 in the series!

Okay, so I’ll get to dollars and cents now, which is why you’re reading this.

The Trip

Downtown Louisville, Kentucky. (Credit: Nick Esposito)

Because it was a last-minute trip and the timing of things, we flew into Louisville, Ky., about an hour and 45-minute drive from Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, where the Pacers play.

Tip-off time was 7 p.m. on Friday. We booked two tickets from LaGuardia to Louisville Muhammad Ali International Airport (about a two-hour flight) that got us in on game day.

The price was $716.40 for two tickets. (I’ll have the full price breakdown at the end.)

That flight got us in at 1:25 p.m. in Louisville (gorgeous city) with Indianapolis being a straight shot up I-65. So we rented a car. We got the manager’s special, which was $83.19. We totaled 140 miles in a Toyota Corolla.

En route to Indy, we did stop at a Culver’s — because it is so damn good. The cheese curds are incredible. That was $14.67. We pulled into the city around 4:45 p.m.

First stop was Long’s Bakery — apparently a must-visit, according to Knicks workhorse Josh Hart, in his podcast with Brunson. They sell craft doughnuts for $0.90 a pop. Quite a deal. We grabbed $7 worth and then went to our hotel. (That’s like $3 cheaper than Dunkin’. And they’re actually fresh.)

Long’s Bakery doughnuts

We booked a room at the Downtown Indianapolis Marriott, which I think was one of their nicer places to stay, for $168.48. We parked the car for $30, plus we gassed it up for $17.70.

Then we walked about a half-mile to Gainbridge Fieldhouse, so no Uber needed.

But first, a drink, or two. Actually, f— it. Two shots each.

We found this bar right outside the stadium. We both slugged vodka (by the way, filled way more than a normal shot) for $6 each at a place called The Pub. Insanity. Shots are easily $12 to $16 each in Manhattan, even Brooklyn.

Also, gotta say, the fans were tolerable. I donned a No. 9 Knicks jersey, which got a lot of respect.

I had two people come take a picture with me, and another, a Pacers fan, say, “I hate the Knicks, but I respect that jersey,” as he shook my hand. Okay, now we’re at our seats.

As luck would have it, we sat next to four Knicks fans, our fellow New York brethren. Actually, one guy was from Connecticut but lived in Pittsburgh or something.

Who cares, for the night he was from New York. We all sat in section 206, row 14.

The two tickets totaled $259.06. Those similar tickets at MSG for Game 5 were priced at $1,687.75.

After finding our seats, we of course went for two cocktails: two vodka Red Bulls. The price: $33.54.

At MSG, that’s at least $60 or more. I spent $40 for a vodka-soda at a regular season Rangers game last season.

The only food we got was two Chick-fil-A sandwiches at $22.89 total. While there is no Chick-fil-A at MSG, you can get a Fuku chicken sandwich for $15 each.

So the game happened. And guess who was there?

Roy Hibbert, a Queens native and former Pacer. Nice. First sign of the pain to come.

While the Knicks had a slow start, thanks to the valiant effort, specifically from Donte DiVincenzo and key bench points from Alec Burks, the Knicks held the lead in the fourth quarter.

Then it was all downhill from there.

The Knicks went on to lose a heartbreaker on a Hail Mary 3-pointer.

Frank and I laughed, smiled, sweated, and cried all over two hours.

But, at least we didn’t break the bank. Plus I got paid to write this, so who’s winning now? Technically, the Knicks, who are now up 3-2 in the series with Game 6 Friday night. Let’s go, Knicks, baby!

Scroll down for the final spending breakdown graphic.

Final breakdown

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