Pacers’ NBA G League team to call $36.5M Noblesville arena home


Noblesville and Pacers Sports & Entertainment have announced a partnership to bring the Mad Ants, an affiliate in the NBA G League, as part of a plan that will result in an 85,000-square-foot arena being constructed on the city’s east side. 

The partnership, which was announced Monday afternoon at Finch Creek Park, will bring the Mad Ants to Noblesville. Noblesville plans to build a 3,400-seat arena that will cost $36.5 million to accommodate the move, officials said. 

“We are excited to welcome Pacers Sports & Entertainment to Noblesville along with the players, coaches and staff of the G League team,” Noblesville Mayor Chris Jensen said. “The Pacers are an iconic brand with deep roots in central Indiana. Partnering with such an impactful organization opens numerous opportunities for our community and drives forward our efforts for a larger sports and entertainment district with enhanced partnerships.”

Noblesville Arena Interior
As part of the partnership with Pacers Sports & Entertainment, Noblesville plans to build a new 3,400-seat, 85,000-square-foot arena on the east side of the city.

The new arena is anticipated to open during the 2024-25 season and the team would play at Gainbridge Fieldhouse in the interim, officials said. City and team officials are working through due diligence steps with local partners and plan to build the arena at Finch Creek Park near the Mojo Up Sports Complex, which generates nearly 1 million visits per year. 

Jensen said during a press conference that he expects the arena will draw 65,000 fans annually to Noblesville and Finch Creek just for games, which is already the second most visited area in Hamilton County for sports visitors.

  “We are working with the Pacers and other partners on programming options for the arena on days it is not used by the Pacers. The facility would be available for events like IHSAA tournaments and competitions, concerts, conferences, corporate events and graduations,” Jensen said. “Further steps are being taken to finalize development and programming partners, which may also incorporate additional project features and recreational amenities.”

Pacers Sports & Entertainment CEO Rick Fuson said the franchise will remain the Mad Ants through the 2023-24 season. A new mascot will be unveiled prior to the 2024-25 season, he said.

Fuson said the Mad Ants’ name will be retired, although he said no determination has been made on what the new name will be. 

  “The G League is world-class basketball, and PS&E is proud to bring that to Noblesville as we strengthen our basketball operations and enhance player development in one of the state’s most vibrant and growing communities,” Fuson said. “We are excited about the way this partnership fits into the bold vision for economic development Mayor Jensen has laid out, and we can’t wait to continue growing our NBA and G League fan base right here in Hamilton County.”