Evan Turner and Lance Stephenson reportedly got in fistfight before playoffs

Lance Stephenson Dwyane Wade

Evan Turner and Lance Stephenson got into an intense fistfight the day before the Indiana Pacers’ first playoff game against the Atlanta Hawks, according to a report.

Yahoo! Sports’ Adrian Wojnarowski dropped the bomb late Tuesday night, reporting that Turner and Stephenson got into a brawl and Turner had to be pulled away by teammates during the team’s Friday practice before Game 1 Saturday.

Woj says Turner was cut from the fight. He also says Turner isn’t the first player to lose his temper with Stephenson in recent weeks, though no other fights have been reported.

The Pacers inexplicably lost to the Atlanta Hawks in Game 1 101-93 and looked pretty dreadful. Stephenson had 19 points and 7 rebounds in 35 minutes while Turner scored 9 points in 18 minutes. Indiana looked much more like the team that earned the top seed in the East during a 101-85 win in Game 2 on Monday.

A source told Woj that these types of fights are a regular occurrence, but they acknowledged that the timing was poor.

This really should not come as a surprise in the least. The Pacers began sliding towards the end of the season after a great start. Roy Hibbert called out his teammates for being selfish and then was reprimanded by coach Frank Vogel, but maybe he was just telling the truth.

It was obvious something has been wrong with the Pacers, and this finally explains things — they’re having chemistry problems. And bringing in Evan Turner was obviously a bad move.

Lance Stephenson gives Dwyane Wade death stare (GIF)

If looks could kill, Dwyane Wade would have dropped dead in his tracks after Lance Stephenson gave him the stare of death in the fourth quarter of the Indiana Pacers-Miami Heat game on Wednesday night.

Stephenson was ejected after getting tangled up with Mario Chalmers following a layup in traffic with 5:01 left in the game. He most likely was tossed for his emotional celebration following the basket, which put the Pacers up 76-72 and pumped up the crowd.

The best part easily was the stare he gave to Wade:

Lance Stephenson Dwyane Wade

And what’d you think about Wade giving the smile?

Lance Stephenson Dwyane Wade smile

Wade demanded a technical for Stephenson, and he got his way. The tech was Lance’s second of the game and led to the ejection. Luckily Indiana pulled out the game despite Stephenson having to miss the final five minutes.

Now let’s watch the Stephenson face on repeat:

GIFs via @cjzero 1, 2

How the heck did Lance Stephenson survive this hard fall (Video)

Lance Stephenson backSomeone explain to me how the heck Lance Stephenson was able to walk after this hard fall during the Indiana Pacers-Atlanta Hawks game on Tuesday night.

Stephenson was in transition and trying to slice through the entire Atlanta defense, but he was up-ended as he caught a piece of Paul Millsap when he went airborne for a layup. The injury happened in the third quarter and Stephenson went to the locker room and did not return. He played 23 minutes, putting up 10 points and (yikes) six turnovers.

At this point, it looks like Stephenson somehow has avoided serious injury.

Lance Stephenson flops on Ray Allen (Video)

Lance Stephenson flopLance Stephenson was off to another hot start for the Indiana Pacers in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals on Tuesday, but he did get into it with Ray Allen for a blatant flop.

Stephenson hit a runner just before the first quarter of the game ended. After he made the shot, he appeared to get hit with an elbow from Allen. Stephenson reacted as if he had been hit by the elbow, which he wasn’t.

The flop by Stephenson comes at a notable time in the series; LeBron James was criticized for supposedly flopping against the Chicago Bulls, and he was quoted before the game saying that it can give a team a competitive advantage. If James endorses the art of embellishing contact, then he can’t be mad at Stephenson, can he?

Here’s a look at the flop in GIF form:

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Lance Stephenson, Juwan Howard have verbal confrontation prior to Game 4

Lance Stephenson just keeps making friends in the Miami Heat locker room.

According to Yahoo! Sports, Stephenson and Heat veteran Juwan Howard were seen in each other’s faces having a verbal clash while members of both teams were warming up on the court roughly 90 minutes before Game 4 on Sunday. Pacers assistant Brian Shaw broke up the incident before it escalated further. Howard retreated to the locker room while Stephenson continued with his warm up.

It’s still not clear what led to the dust-up or who started it, but this obviously isn’t the first time Stephenson has gotten under the skin of a member of the Heat this series. As the entire world knows by now, Stephenson displayed the choke sign in LeBron James’ direction during the Pacers’ Game 3 win. LeBron responded to Stephenson on Saturday by hilariously refusing to respond.

That Stephenson, 21, was able to create such a reaction out of a seasoned, 39-year-old 18-year vet shows just how irritating the second-year Pacers bench warmer has become for the Heat.

The Heat went on to win the game, tying the series at two games apiece. Stephenson and Howard saw a combined zero minutes of action.

LeBron James has no response for apologetic Lance Stephenson

LeBron James had no response for Lance Stephenson when the media asked him about the choking gesture given by the Pacers guard during Game 3 of the Miami-Indiana playoff series. James said he didn’t know he was mocked by Stephenson after he missed a technical foul free throw in the third quarter on Thursday.

Asked for a response, LeBron was dismissive of Stephenson.

“Lance Stephenson? You want a quote about Lance Stephenson?” James said after practice on Saturday. “I’m not even going to give him the time. Knock it off.”

Stephenson apologized for his actions.

“I was wrong and disrespectful to my teammates, the Miami Heat and their organization,” he said. “I’m sorry that I did that. It was very disrespectful. I’ll never do it again.”

First off, Stephenson probably only apologized for public relations purposes. What he did in the heat of competition wasn’t exactly the worst thing. Players respond in one of two ways when that happens: They either go Reggie Miller, or they continue to choke. So it’s not like that was a bad move.

Secondly, there’s no chance I believe LeBron when he says he didn’t know it happened. I understand he says he stops reading commentary or watching things on TV, but I don’t buy that at all. We know he was watching Game 2 of the Thunder-Lakers series. He knew Stephenson did it, but he didn’t want to get involved. He’ll gave to make his real statement in Game 4.

Lance Stephenson gives choking gesture after LeBron James misses FT (Video)

The Miami Heat began falling apart in the third quarter of Game 3 against the Pacers in the Eastern Conference Semifinals on Thursday, and Lance Stephenson was sure to let them know. The Pacers benchwarmer gave a choking gesture after LeBron James missed a technical foul free throw late in the third quarter.

James missed nearly every field goal he attempted in the second half after starting off the first half well. Dwyane Wade went 2-for-13, and Shane Battier missed all seven of his field goal attempts.

I’m not sure if you call this a choke, but it was another poor effort from the Heat.

Chest bump to Eye on Basketball