Suns super fan Mr. ORNG committed to being in stands for every playoff game

Patrick Battillo said he was looking for a way to get fans more involved in games, and that’s when Mr. ORNG was born 13 years ago.
Published: Apr. 25, 2023 at 3:03 PM MST|Updated: Apr. 25, 2023 at 4:17 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- By day, Patrick Battillo teaches student athletes at Peoria High School as the head basketball coach. But by night, Coach Pat looks a bit different. “Not superhero, just a super fan,” said Battillo. “That’s the best way to describe it, somebody that can bring that energy and make a difference. That’s what it’s all about, and that’s what I like to do.” At every Suns home game, the mild-mannered educator transforms himself into the most frenetic, beloved, most recognizable Suns fan the team has.

It’s not hard to spot MR. ORNG at a Suns’ game. As a longtime season ticket holder, Battillo said he was looking for a way to get fans more involved in games, and that’s when Mr. ORNG was born 13 years ago.“I just painted my face and sprayed my hair orange one game, and then I was like, I need to do something bigger with it,” said Battillo. “I just put it together in the off-season and made the brand known as Mr. ORNG, and it took off ever since.”

Mr. ORNG admits it can be a challenge juggling his job as a high school coach and dressing up to be in the stands to cheer on his favorite team. Especially when he jumps on a plane to attend playoff games on the road. Some of his students think it’s a little crazy. “We clown him sometimes, make jokes about him,” said student Marcus Jackson. “But we also know it’s cool to see his passion about the game and the Suns.”

“I take that with great responsibility,” said Battillo. “I am very humbled to be able to do what I love, and show them that you can follow your dreams, and coach, and mentor people, and also have fun and bring energy and excitement and joy to individuals in the community.” Battillo said the best part of being Mr. ORNG is arriving at the arena, getting high fives from fans, and helping the Suns win.

“You could be having a bad day or a lot of things going wrong,” said Battillo. “Putting on the MR. ORNG outfit re-energizes me every single time because it’s about going out there and bringing a smile to someone’s face, talking positively with someone, and if it’s a game day, bringing energy to the arena.”